Team USA Minnesota News
Team USA Minnesota announced today that Dennis Barker, who has been coaching the team part-time since it was founded in 2001, has become the full-time coach of the long distance running training center. Barker, who had been head cross country and track coach for men and women at Augsburg College in Minneapolis for 20 years, resigned his position there effective January 1.
During Barker’s part-time tenure as coach at Team USA Minnesota he developed an Olympian in the 1500 meters and 20 national champions, including in the 1500 meters, 3000 meters and 10,000 meters on the track; 1 mile, 10K, 15K, 20K, 10 mile, 25K, half marathon and marathon on the roads; and 4K, 6K, 10K and an 8K team in cross country. He also placed athletes on 28 U.S. World teams on the track, the roads and cross country and achieved 68 top three finishes in national championships.
“I’m looking forward to focusing more of my attention on the training and racing of the Team USA Minnesota runners,” said Barker, who coaches track, road and cross country athletes from the 800 meters up through the marathon. “I think this will enable us to continue to successfully attract and develop great U.S. distance runners.”
Barker ran collegiately at Golden Valley Lutheran College in Minneapolis, where he was an All American in track and cross country, and at Iowa State University, where he was the school record holder in the 10,000 meters and competed in the NCAA Cross Country Championships. He is a USA Track & Field Level II distance and sprint coach.
“We are extremely excited to start 2014 with a full-time coach now that Dennis has left his post at Augsburg College,” said Pat Goodwin, president and founder of Team USA Minnesota. “It’s amazing what he was able to accomplish with our group during the past 12 years given his collegiate responsibilities. We anticipate even greater accomplishments now that Dennis will be able to devote more time to each of our athletes.”
Team USA Minnesota will continue to use the facilities at both Augsburg College and the University of Minnesota as well as the more than 20 Life Time Fitness clubs located in the Twin Cities.
Team USA Minnesota is based in the Twin Cities. Formed in 2001, the purpose of the training center is to improve the competitiveness of post-collegiate American distance running and to develop Olympians. Twin Cities In Motion is a silver sponsor of the program.