|Title:||Head Cross Country/Track Coach|
J.D. Evilsizer is in his eighth full year as head Cross Country coach at Columbus State University and his fourth year as head Track and Field coach entering the 2012-2013 year.
Evilsizer took over a men’s cross country program that produced just two top five finishes at the Peach Belt Championship and had never had an individual PBC Champion in the 14 years prior. In just a short time, Evilsizer put Columbus State cross country on the national map. The men’s program won five straight PBC Championships from 2006-2010 and has continuously preformed well at the NCAA Southeast Regional. In 2008, the program made its first trip to the NCAA Championship and went back to the national meet in 2009 and 2010.
In addition to an impressive streak of PBC titles, Evilsizer has
produced four individual PBC champions including three of the past
four. In 2010, Evilsizer and the program just missed out on an
individual national championship as Meshack Koyiaki crossed the
line in second place at the NCAA Championship in Louisville,
On the women’s side, Evilsizer had an equally challenging task to turn CSU into a winner. Evilsizer wasted no time winning the program’s first Peach Belt Championship in his first season at the helm. He continued racking up the trophies capturing six straight conference titles from 2005-2010. Just like the men, Evilsizer has produced three female individual PBC Champions.
In 2009, Evilsizer led the Lady Cougars to the NCAA Southeast Regional crown and to the program’s only trip to the NCAA Championship.
In total, Evilsizer has won four Peach Belt Conference Coach of the Year awards, including sweeping both the men’s and women’s honors in 2010 becoming just the second coach in PBC history to accomplish the feat. He has also coached six PBC Runners of the Year and five Freshman of the Year award winners. In all, Evilsizer has coach 50 All-PBC runners.
In 2010, Evilsizer was given the task of up-starting a Track and Field program from the ground up. Just like with the cross country program, Evilsizer has not disappointed.
During the first year of the program, CSU sent two student-athletes to the NCAA Championships with Shan Crawford becoming the program’s first All-American finishing in fifth place in the 100-meter dash.
2011 was even more impressive as the Lady Cougars competed in three events at the national meet. Once again, Crawford garnered All-American status this time in the 200-meter dash.
The trend continued in 2012 with Evilsizer sending
student-athletes in three different events at the 2012 National
Championships in Pueblo, CO. For the first time in program history,
a relay team captured All-American awards as the Lady Cougar
4x100-meter relay team finished in third place. Once again,
Crawford performed well individually finishing in fourth place in
the 200-meter dash receiving her fourth career All-American
Prior to coming to CSU, Evilsizer coached the Smiths Station High School program for 15 years and amassing 10 State Team Championships, 12 runner-up finishes, and coached some 150 individual state champions. Among those individuals were six national All-America runners.
Evilsizer was a two-year letterman at Livingston University (now the University of West Alabama) where he was the first-ever Gulf South Conference Cross Country champion in 1971. After Livingston dropped its program, he transferred to Auburn University where he earned a scholarship and set a school record in the steeplechase event. He went on to obtain his bachelor’s degree in 1977, followed by a master’s degree in 1984, and an advanced sixth-year degree in 1987, all from Auburn University.
As a runner, Evilsizer was the Grand Prix Series runner-up in 1980 and has set personal records of 2:19:01 in a marathon, 29:20 in a 10K, 14:10 in a 5K, 49:50 in a 10-mile, and 23:55 in an 8K.
Evilsizer and his wife Debra have two adult children - James and Michelle, who both ran in the CSU program. In addition to his duties at CSU, Evilsizer will continue working with the Smiths Station program.