Three Big 12 cross country coaches and one student-athlete have been awarded USTFCCCA Region Athlete and Coaches of the Year honors for the 2011 cross country season in Division I, as voted by the division's coaches.
Texas A&M's Henry Lelei has been named the South Central Region Men's Athlete of the Year while Texas coach John Hayes earned the South Central Region Men's Coach of the Year accolade. Oklahoma State coach Dave Smith garnered the Midwest Region Men's Coach of the Year honor. Iowa State's Corey Ihmels received his second-straight Midwest Region Women's Coach of the Year award.
Men's Athlete of the Year (South Central Region)
Henry Lelei, Texas A&M
Lelei, a junior from Kapasbet, Kenya, won the South Central by nearly nine seconds over Arkansas' Eric Fernandez. Lelei was third at the Big 12 Conference Championship and was named the league's Newcomer of the Year.
Men's Coach of the Year/Roy Griak (Midwest Region)
Dave Smith, Oklahoma State
Smith's Cowboys have had an undefeated season to this point, taking the region title with a 42-45 victory over Oklahoma, placing runners in slots 3-4-5-6. The second-ranked team in the country also won the Big 12 title for the fourth-straight year in Smith's six years at OSU. This is Smith's fourth time being recognized as the Midwest Region Men's Coach of the Year.
Men's Coach of the Year (South Central Region)
John Hayes, Texas
The Longhorns won the South Central region by placing their top five runners in the top 15 for a 40-56 decision over runner-up Texas A&M. Texas placed third at the Big 12 meet this season.
Women's Coach of the Year (Midwest Region)
Corey Ihmels, Iowa State
The Cyclones of Iowa State picked up their second-straight Midwest region title by placing their top four in the top 10 of this year's race. ISU also won its first-ever Big 12 title this fall.