July 24, 2001
NORMAN, Okla. - Ed Wade, one of the most decorated and successful throwers in University of Oklahoma track and field history, will return to his alma mater as an assistant track coach. Wade, who has been a successful junior high and high school track and field coach in Marlow, will replace long-time Sooner assistant and throwing coach Pete Kron, who is retiring at the end of this month.
"We are excited about Ed's return to our track and field program," said OU director of athletics Joe Castiglione. "He knows what it means to be a Sooner and he experienced great success as a student-athlete. He has established himself as one of the bright young coaching stars in his area of expertise. He has worked hard to build solid relationships and earn respect throughout high school track and field ranks, in Oklahoma and beyond our borders, and we believe that knowledge will be a huge asset in developing championship quality student-athletes."
Wade won seven conference titles while competing for the Sooners in 1985-88. He won the NCAA title in 1988 in the indoor shot put, Kron's second student-athlete to win a national championship. Wade earned NCAA All-America honors six times and won the 1988 U.S. National title.
"Ed's history with our program, his proven ability on the high school level and the respect he has earned from his peers in the coaching profession will be a huge asset for our program," Jill Lancaster and Rodney Price, OU's co-head coaches added. "We believe there is a tremendous amount of home grown talent in our sport in the state of Oklahoma and that extends to the coaching profession. Ed understands what it means to put on a Sooner uniform and compete for the state's premier institution of higher education. Now, he will be able to share that feeling with current and future Sooner student-athletes. He trained at OU with one of the best in the business in Pete Kron, and now Ed will help us take that part of our team to the next level."
Wade competed in the 1988 U.S. Olympic Trials in the discus and shot put and competed in four U.S. Olympic Festivals. He was an Academic All-Big Eight selection and was selected Big Eight Athlete of the Month in March 1988 after winning the NCAA Indoor title in Oklahoma City. The Sooner school record holder in indoor and outdoor shot put and the outdoor discus, Wade received a March of Dimes Headliner Award in March 1988 and was named to The Daily Oklahoman's All-Century team for track and field.
"This is a dream come true for any former Sooner," Wade said. "I know what Pete did with the program while he was here - he was my coach when I won the national title. I know the history of this program and I am honored to have the opportunity to return to my alma mater to build on that tradition. As a high school coach, you dream about the opportunity to coach at the next level, and to be given that opportunity at your alma mater is special.
"I knew I wouldn't leave what we had been a part of in Marlow except for a special opportunity - throwing coach at the University of Oklahoma is that opportunity. I look forward to working with Jill (Lancaster) and Rodney (Price), OU's co-head coaches, and the rest of the staff as we continue to add to the tradition of excellence begun by those coaches who came before us."
He earned his degree from OU in 1989 in physical education and went to work as a elementary and middle school teacher and coach at Marlow in 1990. He has coached seventh grade boys and girls basketball, seventh and eighth grade and high school football, and was the head track and field coach for the Marlow seventh grade girls team (1993-96), junior high boys (1994-99), high school boys (1990-99), junior high girls (2000-01) and high school girls (2000-01).
In his tenure at Marlow, he coached seven Oklahoma high school state champions, 12 state runners-up, one regional team champion, three regional team runners-up, and three overall state leaders. Additionally, he coached two state meet record holders, one overall state record holder, one Great Southwest champ, one Gatorade Athlete of the Year, one high school All-American and two Division I scholarship recipients. Former Sooner Bambi Carson, who recently became the first back-to-back winner of Big 12 discus titles and was a three-time NCAA All-American, came to Norman from Marlow's track and field program. Carson completed her eligibility in June 2001.
Wade's success at the high school level has caught the attention of national organizations. He served as the head girls coach for the 2001 Great Southwest Team, was a two-time assistant coach for the Arkansas-Oklahoma dual meet and was named Region 5 coach of the year in 1995. He served as vice-president of the Oklahoma Track Coaches Association for two years and was named to the Oklahoma Secondary Schools Activity Association's advisory board for track in 1999.
He has been a clinician at the Colorado Track Coach's Clinic, the New Mexico Coach's Clinic, the Oklahoma Winter Track Clinic and at the USA Thrower's Camp in California and Pennsylvania.
A native of Sallisaw, Wade and his wife, Amy, have two sons: Collin, who is 8, and Evan, who is 6. Wade was an All-State selection in track in the shot and discus at Sallisaw High School and earned honorable mention All-State honors in football as a guard.
With Wade's addition, the Sooner track and field staff now includes four graduates of OU - Lancaster, Wade, cross country coach Todd Maycumber and sprint coach Shanon Atkinson, and an Oklahoma native, Price, who competed at Eastern Oklahoma and was a Oklahoma high school coach before entering the college coaching ranks. Tom Williams, the Sooner vault coach, is a Kansas native and former student-athlete and assistant coach in the successful University of Nebraska track and field program.