Joplin, Mo. – Missouri Southern Director of Athletics, Jared Bruggeman has announced that effective July 1, 2013, Bryan Schiding will be named the interim head coach for the men's track and field and cross country programs at Southern. This transition will take place for the 2013-14 academic year and a national search for a head coach will be conducted in January of 2014.
"I am really excited to have Bryan step up into this position," Bruggeman said. "His familiarity with the program is a great asset and he knows the student-athletes. They have nothing but respect for him as he has shown proven leadership and is a winner as a coach."
"I feel very fortunate to be given this opportunity," Schiding said. "MSSU Cross Country and Track & Field traditions have been built over years of hard work and dedication, not only to the sport but to MSSU and Joplin. I have been privileged to have spent these last four years learning under Coach Tom Rutledge. I look forward to the challenges ahead and keeping our tradition and success intact in to the future."
Schiding is in his fourth season as an assistant coach with the Lions and has worked primarily with the sprinters and jumpers. In three years at Southern, his athletes have combined for nine individual and two relay All-American awards. Last year, the Southern sprinters and long/triple jumpers virtually rewrote the indoor and outdoor top-10 lists. Freshman sprinter Jeff Fraley, was the indoor and outdoor MIAA champion in the 200m, and was ranked top three nationally in the 60m, 100m, and 200m dashes. In addition, Fraley was a two-time All-American 200m sprinter last year. Freshman jumper Darion Boure broke the outdoor triple jump record by nearly a foot, and was also an outdoor All-American. All said athletes which he worked with combined for 62 NCAA qualifying marks and have set ten school records within three years.
Prior to Missouri Southern, Schiding spent six years at Missouri S&T. He was twice named as the NCAA Division II Men's Regional Assistant Coach of the Year, earning the honor in 2007 for the Great Lakes Region after the Miners posted their highest finish ever at an NCAA championship meet, then again in 2009 as the Missouri S&T men's team swept the Great Lakes Valley Conference titles with strong performances from its sprinters and jumpers keying the title runs.
While at S&T, Schiding had 74 individuals qualify for the NCAA Championships with 22 earning All-America honors. His athletes set 61 new school records and had over 150 all-conference performances. Missouri S&T also had four individuals earn the GLVC "Freshman of the Year" awards.
Prior to joining the Missouri S&T coaching staff, Schiding served as an assistant track and field coach at LaSalle University in Philadelphia for the three seasons coaching both the men's and women's field events and also worked with the sprinters and hurdlers.
Schiding was the team captain while competing at Bucknell University where he was a 2000 graduate with a bachelor's degree in economics. He set the school record in the indoor long jump and won conference titles in the long jump (twice) and triple jump, earning seven all-conference awards during his career at Bucknell. Schiding also competed in the sprint and multi events as well as the relays. Schiding earned his MBA with a concentration in marketing from LaSalle.
Head coach Tom Rutledge, who is retiring after 24 years at Southern, couldn't be more happy about the hiring.
"Bryan is a great coach and will do a great job for Missouri Southern," Rutledge said. "He knows our tradition and works great with the athletes. I am very happy that he will have his chance to prove the talents he has. He will maintain the character and winning attitude that we have established at MSSU."
Schiding and his wife Stephanee, a 2002 MSSU grad and former Missouri Southern track athlete, reside in Joplin with their daughter, Lilyan (3).