Southern Illinois University will dedicate its latest addition to its athletics facilities, the Lew Hartzog Track and Field Complex, on Friday, March 29, 2013, prior to the opening events of the Bill Cornell Spring Classic.
Dedication festivities will begin at 1:30 p.m. with speeches by SIU Chancellor Rita Cheng, SIU Director of Athletics Mario Moccia, former Southern Illinois track and field head coach and Saluki Hall of Fame member Lew Hartzog, and current head coach Connie Price-Smith, with a meet-and-greet immediately afterward.
Action at Day One of the Bill Cornell Spring Classic will begin at 3 p.m. with field events, followed by the men's and women's 10K races, beginning with the women at 6 p.m.
At the conclusion of Day One, there will be a reunion reception for Track and Field alumni (invitation only) at the Saluki Stadium club at 8 p.m.
Festivities will continue on Saturday, March 30, for Day Two of the meet. Remaining field events begin at 9 a.m. and track gets underway at 12:30 p.m. A hospitality tailgate for Saluki Track and Field alumni will begin at 1 p.m. and continue throughout the duration of the meet.
The namesake of the facility, Lew Hartzog, produced a national powerhouse track and field program at Southern Illinois in a short amount of time. Hartzog pulled the Salukis out of last place in the IIAC to a conference title in his first season in 1961, and pushed the Salukis to fourth place nationally in only his third season at SIU, Southern's highest finish ever in the national meet. Over the next three decades between track and field and cross country, Hartzog racked up 90 of SIU's 162 All-Americans, 22 Missouri Valley Conference Championships and seven NCAA champions, and his coaching was rewarded with 19 MVC Coach of the Year nods (one of those in men's golf), as well as two honors as the NCAA National Coach of the Year in 1982 and 1984.
Lew Hartzog Track and Field Complex Quick Facts
• Started May 23, 2011.
• Finished May, 2012.
• $3.96 million project.
• Regulation NCAA competition 400-meter track with a state-of-the art, full-depth polyurethane synthetic track surface system.
• Accommodations for regulation NCAA competition field events, including bi-directional pole vault and long and triple jump surfaces.
• Accommodations for regulation NCAA competition throwing events, including a dual shot put pad and hammer throw, discus and javelin areas.
• State-of-the-art, multi-event synthetic turf infield which can be set to accommodate an NCAA regulation soccer pitch or football field.
• Spectator seating for 250, including seven ADA positions with future capacity for up to 500 additional spectators.
• Pole-mounted track and field sports lighting.
• 4,500 square foot track and locker support building with future expansion capability.
• Free-standing track building for event operations and viewing.
Lew Hartzog Career Notes
• Saluki Track and Field head coach from 1960-84; Cross Country head coach from 1960-82; Men's Golf coach from 1986-92.
• Southern Illinois Director of Athletics from 1981-85.
• Between Track and Cross Country, coached 90 All-Americans, 14 Olympians, 12 NCAA Runners-Up and seven NCAA champions.
• Two-time NCAA National Coach of the Year (1982, '84).
• 22 MVC Championships between cross country and indoor and outdoor track.
• 19-time MVC Coach of the Year (Track and Golf).
• Led SIU to three top-ten team finishes at the NCAA National Meet (SIU has five in its history).
• Member of five different Halls of Fame: Drake Relays (1987), Southern Illinois (1987), Illinois Track Coaches (1988), Missouri Valley Conference (2003), and USTFCCCA (2007).
Bill Cornell Career Notes
• Student-Athlete from 1962-65.
• SIU Track and Field coach from 1984-92.
• Three-time All-American.
• Two-time NCAA Runner-Up.
• As SIU track coach, eight-time MVC Coach of the Year.
• At Southern, coached 16 All-Americans, three Olympians, three NCAA Champions and one NCAA Runner-Up.