Abilene Christian to Hold Inaugural Wes Kittley Invitational|
Abilene Christian is hosting the inaugural Wes Kittley Invitational Saturday.
April 10, 2014
LUBBOCK, Texas - Texas Tech head track and field coach Wes Kittley will be honored this weekend by Abilene Christian University with the running of the inaugural Wes Kittley Invitational Saturday at Elmer Gray Stadium.
Kittley, now in his 15th season at the helm of the Red Raiders and Lady Raiders, will be honored at a reception Friday in Abilene before competition begins at the meet named in his honor. Cliff Felkins and Suzanne Dickenson, former Abilene Christian student-athletes and staff members alongside Kittley, will also be recognized at the reception. Felkins now serves as the Texas Tech throws coach, while Dickenson serves as Texas Tech's academic advisor.
A native of Rule, Texas, Kittley brought 29 NCAA Championships to Abilene Christian during his unprecedented reign as head coach. He served as the women's head coach from 1984-1999, and was named the men's head coach in 1993 when the two programs combined. Prior to his coaching career, Kittley was an All-American in the 800-meter run at Abilene Christian.
During his final season at Abilene Christian, Kittley won four NCAA Championships between the men's and women's indoor and outdoor track and field teams. It marked the second time in three years he accomplished the four-way sweep. He became the first collegiate track and field coach to win all four track and field championships in 1996.
Kittley was named the Division II Women's Coach of the Year eight times and was inducted into the Big Country Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006.
Kittley's rise as a dominant coaching figure in the track and field world was recognized by the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association in 2006 as he was named to the USTFCCCA Division II Silver Anniversary Team as the outstanding coach of the previous 25 years.
At Texas Tech, Kittley has steadily built the Red Raiders and Lady Raiders into a regular contender on the national track and field stage. He brought home the program's first-ever Big 12 Championship in 2005, while 15 Red Raiders and Lady Raiders have won NCAA titles. In all, 10 Red Raider and Lady Raider track and field products have competed on Olympic teams while six have won Olympic medals.