John McDonnell, mighty Arkansas track coach, dies at 82

Sports

FILE – In this May 14, 2006, file photo, John McDonnell, coach of the Arkansas men’s track team, shouts to team members during the 5,000 meter run at the Southeastern Conference Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Fayetteville, Ark. John McDonnell, the track and field coach who set a gold standard for excellence at Arkansas during his 36 years at the school, has died. He was 82. He died Monday night, June 7, 2021, according to a family statement released by the university. (AP Photo/April L. Brown, File)

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — The famed Arkansas track and field coach John McDonnell has died. His family says he died Monday night.

McDonnell set a gold standard for excellence at Arkansas during his 36 years at the school. Under him, the Razorbacks were a perennial power in cross-country and indoor and outdoor track and field. His teams won six national triple crowns, 12 consecutive NCAA indoor titles from 1984-95 and 83 conference titles.

His men’s teams produced 40 NCAA championships. Athletic director Hunter Yurachek calls him “quite simply the greatest collegiate coach in the history of intercollegiate athletics.”

John McDonnell was 82 years old.

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