Ron Garner, Kimberlee Turko Named Assistant Track and Field Coaches at UVa
Nov. 6, 2002
University of Virginia head track and field coach Randy Bungard has announced the hiring of Ron Garner and Kimberlee Turko as assistant coaches. Garner joins the staff after a brief hiatus from collegiate coaching. Most recently he was the head coach at Clemson University and was named the ACC Coach of the Year in 1999. Turko joins the staff following a successful career as a Cavalier.
In his career, Garner has coached 55 conference champions, 65 All-Americans, and assisted in the development of two Olympic medalist and numerous NCAA Champions. The 1999 ACC Coach of the Year, Garner has been a part of 18 different teams that won conference championships and 10 others that have been runners-up in their conference meets. Garner will be coaching the throwing events for Virginia.
The head track & field coach at Clemson from 1998-1999, Garner coached the Tigers to the 1999 team title in the outdoor season, the first such title in eight years. The Tigers were ranked fourth nationally in the national dual meet team power rankings. Garner came to Clemson after a six and a halfyear stint as the recruiting coordinator and assistant coach at the University of Illinois. While in Champaign, the Illini won six Big Ten conference titles and were second on four other occasions, the most successful period in program history. In 1995 and 1996 Illinois finished fourth at the national championships. Three of Garner’s recruiting classes were ranked in the top-three nationally. At Illinois, Garner coached Collinus Newsome, who won the USATF Junior National championship (1995) in the shot put andwon five consecutive shot put titles (1995-1997), was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Year, and placed 11th at the US Olympic Trials.
Before Illinois, Garner was an assistant coach at Clemson, where he established and coached the first women’s track&field team in school history in 1987 while serving as assistant coach for cross country (1986-87). During his tenure at Clemson, Garner worked with Bungard, who was also an assistant with the Tiger program at that time. The Tigers won the ACC cross country title in 1986, the ACC outdoor title and finished 12th at the NCAA championships in 1991. At Clemson, Garner coached 22 ACC Champions and 44 All-ACC performers including Jamine Moton, who won five ACC throwing titles under Garner.
From 1982 to 1986 Garner served as an assistant coach at Christopher Newport, his alma mater. While with the Captains, Garner coached the NCAA Division III Champion in the shot put at the 1985 indoor championships and in 1986 swept the national indoor and outdoor titles in the shot put. In 1985 he coached the national record holder in the shot put as well.
Garner is married to Disa Garner, the head volleyball coach at James Madison University. The Dukes qualified for the NCAA tournament in 2000, her first year with the program.
“Ron is one of the best coaches in the nation,” says Bungard. “He brings a lot of things to Virginia–he is ethically sound and has experience in every aspect of coaching. He has been an administrator, a recruiter, as well as a top-notch athlete’s coach.”
Turko earned All-ACC honors in the heptathlon and the 60-meter hurdles and was a team captain for the Cavaliers during her undergraduate years. She led the team in the 100HH in both 2000 and 2001.
“Kimberlee’s familiarity with my system make her a natural fit for the program,” says Bungard. “She will be a big part of not only the day-to-day operations of the program but will also be a major support in the coaching aspect of the team. I think this is the start of a great coaching career for her.”