Olympian and former Seminole star back in fold as new track & field throws coach
Veteran FSU track assistant leaves winning legacy behind as he returns to North Carolina
Track 'Noles cap East Preliminary with 21 athletes bound for NCAA Championship meet
Putman, Worden, Brits among FSU track standouts earning NCAA East Regional marks at Clemson
Track 'Noles return to Virginia hoping to continue string of ACC Outdoor Championships
For nearly every one of his many years at Florida State, associate head coach Harlis Meaders has helped someone get on the podium at the NCAA Championships. Michael Putman continued that tradition in 2011 for the men's shot put.
In addition to his coaching responsibilities, Meaders is in charge of team travel as well as day-to-day team management and operations. He is track's direct liaison with the administration, compliance, facilities, admissions, financial aid and the business office.
A look at Meaders' Florida State resume more than confirms the success he has had in Tallahassee. He has had seven different athletes on the men's and women's teams produce 15 All-America awards. What makes this even more impressive is that in 15 years of competition prior to his arrival, Seminole throwers only accounted for six All-America awards. Florida State throwers have performed outstandingly at the conference meet, bringing home 19 ACC Indoor and Outdoor titles during his tenure.
The past several seasons Meaders has made a notable difference in multis with All-America Gonzalo Barroilhet. He helped Barroilhey win the NCAA Indoor heptathlon crown when he was a freshman and take third during the Outdoor decathlon before competing at the Olympics for Chile in 2008. Barroilhet was injured most of 2009 but will be a key figure for the Seminoles in 2010. Meaders also helped Kamorean Hayes break the school record in shot put at the 2008 ACC Indoor Championships.
Meaders' work is reflected in the number of spots his throwers occupy on the FSU career top 10. On the women's side, the hammer, shot put and discus records have all been set under his tenure. Meaders' female athletes have claimed 28 of the 40 top-10 marks in the throwing events, including all 10 in the hammer and nine of the 10 in the shot put.
Meaders' star pupil is considered to be Garrett Johnson, who will go down as perhaps the greatest student-athlete in school history. In the fall of 2005 Johnson was honored as the second Rhodes Scholar in Florida State history, as well as the first for a student-athlete. Then in the spring he brought home NCAA Indoor and Outdoor titles in the shot put for the program's first national championships in that event. In addition, he set Florida State, ACC and NCAA East Regional records. Most recently he competed at the 2008 US Olympic Trials. Johnson was also ranked fourteenth in the world.
Meaders came to Florida State by way of Western Carolina University where he served as the assistant track and field coach for three years and obtained his master's degree in physical education. While at Western Carolina, Meaders instructed courses in the physical education department and coached multiple Southern Conference champions.
Meaders has not only had success producing top athletes but helping student-athletes become successful coaches. Gregg Jack is the throws coach at Virginia Tech; Cathy Erickson is at Harvar, David Price is at East Carolina, B.J. Linnenbrink is at Duke. Karen Rademeyer and Makiba Batten are also former Meaders' pupils who went on to coach.
A high school All-American from Monroe, N.C., Meaders competed at the University of North Carolina in the shot put, the 35-lb. weight throw and the discus. While at UNC, he was a three-time individual ACC champion and a key member of the 1992 ACC Outdoor Championship team. An NCAA qualifier in the discus and 1992 Olympic Trials qualifier, Meaders held the school record in the discus throw at North Carolina for 11 years and is currently ranked second in Tar Heel history.
· 2005 EAST REGIONAL ASSISTANT COACH OF THE YEAR (THROWS)