Hawkeye Community College has introduced the addition of a handful of new athletic programs, including Cross Country and Track & Field. The college, which is home to about 5,300 students in Waterloo, IA, has also recently voted on a mascot- Rusty the Redtail. Hawkeye offers 1- and 2-year degree programs, as well as business and community courses, and courses for high school juniors and seniors to begin accumulating their college credits. Since the addition of Cross Country and Track, the Redtails have signed a handful of Iowa seniors including the following:
Cris Eagan (Cedar Falls; Long Jump); Mikki Mindus (Emmetsburg; XC & Track); Brandon Beard (Western Dubuque; 400M); Kenny Beard (Western Dubuque; 400M); Jurane Lizer (Dike-New Hartford; Sprints); John "Jay" Kramer IV (Cedar Falls; XC); Isaac Connolly (Western Dubuque; XC); Hannah Johnson (Dunkerton; Track).
Continue below to hear more about how the program was started, the coaches' philosophies and goals, and more from Assistant Coach, Tyler Mulder.
What led to Hawkeye College starting a cross country & track team?
Coach Mulder: Our Athletic Director, Dave Ball has long awaited the day to have athletics and worked hard to add soccer, cross country, track & field, on top of already having sport shooting and golf. We just recently found out we will be adding Volleyball and Bowling in 2018. The reason for adding athletics was to help boost enrollment, but also give the school some exciting events to attend and unify the school.
Will you focus on certain areas of the track team in the beginning, or are you working to recruit and coach a full team come next winter and spring?
TM: We are working on being a well-rounded team covering all events, with an emphasis on being strong in the 4x100, 4x400, and 4x800m relays.
What is your background in running/coaching?
Left: Coach Ruroden; Right: Coach Mulder
(To read more about head coach Micah Ruroden and Coach Mulder, click here).
What coaching philosophies/styles do you follow/believe in?
What made you interested in becoming a coach for Hawkeye Community College?
What have you been focusing on in preparation for the inaugural year for the RedTail Track/XC team?
What are you looking for in recruits?
What do you want recruits to know about you and Hawkeye Community College?
TM: That we are looking
to be competitive right away, that their goals become my goals. Wherever
they are at in life, I will help them get to where they want to be. We
are a small college, but offer a great opportunity to continue their running careers
and work with some of the best coaches in Iowa. Also being a part of a
first year program is rare and very special because you will forever be
remembered as Hawkeye College's first ever XC and Track & Field team.
What do you think is most appealing to recruits about Hawkeye College?
How should potential recruits who are interested in becoming a RedTail learn more about the school and program?
TM: The best way to
learn more about the program is to come for a visit and let the coaches know
you will be visiting. Take time to talk with us directly and we will
give the athletes the rundown of everything that is going on and happening at
Hawkeye. Another thing that I tell any athlete is that most colleges or
universities (Hawkeye included) have a "recruit me" form to fill out on their website. I always try to get back
to the athlete as soon as possible, and it shows the coaches that the athlete is
What are your hopes for the inaugural year of the Redtail Track/XC team?
TM: We are going to have a big team so we will have a group of athletes that are looking to qualify for Nationals, and we are going to have a group of athletes who just want to compete and get better, so we look to create a fun environment that will allow us to do both of those things. As I am big in setting goals, I personally have the goal of getting athletes qualified to Nationals and getting them to achieve All-American status, maybe even National Champions. We want to be strong as a whole team, so we want to make our presence known in the ICCAC. Another side goal is making our presence known at the Drake Relays, as it is the premier event for the state of Iowa and a great way to show off our athletes to the state of Iowa.