Coach Victor Thomas's Legacy Cemented with USTFCCCA Coaches Hall of Fame Induction
Coach Victor Thomas's Legacy Cemented with USTFCCCA Coaches Hall of Fame Induction

Jefferson City, Missouri – The United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) has unveiled its distinguished list of inductees for the class of 2023, and among them stands Victor Thomas, the revered head coach of Lincoln University’s track & field team.

With an impressive tally of 14 NCAA Division II titles to his name, Thomas’s forthcoming enshrinement in the USTFCCCA Coaches Hall of Fame is a testament to his unparalleled legacy. ALSO READ, Three Jamaicans, including Victor Thomas, in line for top awards in US

Having steered Lincoln University’s women’s track & field program to an astonishing record of nine NCAA Division II Outdoor championships and five NCAA Division II indoor triumphs, Thomas has been the architect behind nearly 1,000 All-American performances. Over his illustrious 22-year career, his expertise has earned him the coveted title of National Coach of the Year on five occasions. A nod from the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association (MIAA) saw Thomas clinch the MIAA Coach of the Year distinction an impressive 10 times, coupled with his 2004 recognition as the Heartland Conference Coach of the Year.

Victor Thomas’ leadership at Lincoln University

Under Victor Thomas’s astute guidance, the Blue Tigers have amassed a staggering 95 individual and 41 relay national titles. Their prowess has also translated into 671 United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association All-Region awards. As a 16-time USTFCCCA Regional Coach of the Year awardee, Thomas’s influence has propelled Lincoln University’s track & field programs to a collective total of 11 MIAA championships. Moreover, his leadership has consistently secured them finishes within the top-three ranks of the NCAA Division II Championships, an impressive feat achieved 28 times. The years spanning 2003 to 2007 witnessed a remarkable five-year streak, during which Lincoln clinched five consecutive NCAA Division II Women’s Outdoor Track & Field Championships. Despite unforeseen circumstances, such as the cancellation of the 2020 NCAA Division II Indoor Track & Field Championships due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Thomas’s strategies have continued to resonate.

Beyond the realms of competition, Victor Thomas’s athletes have demonstrated exceptional dedication in the classroom. Since Lincoln’s re-entry into the MIAA in 2011, over 200 Blue Tigers have proudly made the MIAA Academic Honor Roll. The accolades further extend to over 50 MIAA Scholar Athlete Awards. Notably, nine athletes have garnered recognition as Google Cloud/CoSIDA Academic All-Americans, while 11 have secured spots on the Google Cloud/CoSIDA Academic All-District first team. Acknowledging their all-encompassing excellence, two Blue Tigers were crowned the USTFCCCA Division II Indoor Scholar Athlete of the Year. Additionally, the Lincoln women’s outdoor track & field team basked in glory as the USTFCCCA Scholar Team of the Year in both 2017 and 2018.

In honor of his remarkable achievements, the Lincoln University Track & Field Program achieved a well-deserved place in the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame in 2013. Further recognition beckoned in the form of Victor Thomas’s induction into the Drake Relays Hall of Fame in 2012, swiftly followed by his entry into the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame in 2021.

Mark your calendars for Tuesday, December 12, as the 2023 USTFCCCA Coaches Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, Presented by REKORTAN, takes center stage in Denver, Colorado. It’s a celebration that underscores Victor Thomas’s monumental contributions to the realm of track & field coaching.

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Anthony Foster is a renowned Jamaican sports journalist, honored twice as the Jamaica sports journalist of the year (in 2004 and 2005). His journalistic achievements are globally recognized. Notably, he authored an award-winning article on Usain Bolt, the iconic 6-time Olympic champion, 11-time World champion, and record holder for the sprint double. This significant piece was published in the Jamaica Gleaner in 2004. Anthony's extensive coverage includes prestigious events such as the Olympic Games in Beijing 2008, London 2012, and Rio 2016. He has also provided coverage for seven (7) World Athletics Championships held between 2007 and 2022, alongside various other international sporting events. Noteworthy mentions comprise his coverage of the 2007 World Cup of cricket and his cherished experience reporting on the 2004 clash between his favorite football team, Argentina, and the USA.