BOONE, N.C. — On June 12, Appalachian State University Athletics announced a plan to honor former track and field and cross-country coach John Weaver ’71 with the creation of the John Weaver Endowed Scholarship.
The scholarship funding will benefit the Mountaineers’ track and field and cross-country programs that excelled under the leadership of Weaver, a 43-time conference coach of the year.
Doug Gillin, director of Appalachian State University Athletics, said, “John Weaver is a legend among Appalachian coaches and has been a leader, teacher and mentor to the student-athletes who have come through his program.
“In addition to coaching countless team and individual champions, he has made a lasting impact far beyond the track. The John Weaver Endowed Scholarship will honor his legacy by benefiting men and women in our track and field program for years to come.”
Weaver retired following the conclusion of Appalachian’s 2018 outdoor track and field season, capping his 47-year coaching career at the university. After graduating from Appalachian in 1971, he coached high school track and field and taught biology at the high school level before returning to Boone in 1979 to pursue his master’s degree in biology. During his time as a graduate student, he served as a graduate assistant in the men’s track and field program.
Weaver took over as the first head coach of Appalachian’s women’s track and field program in 1982, became the head coach for both programs (women’s and men’s) in 1995 and helped Appalachian claim 78 conference championships, with three coming in the Sun Belt Conference and 75 occurring in the Southern Conference.
Since starting the women’s program 36 years ago, Weaver helped that program — as well as the cross-country, and both the indoor and outdoor track and field programs — account for two NCAA Division I National Champions (twice in the 1,500 meters).
Additionally, Weaver aided the women's track and field and cross-country teams to achieve the following:
- nine NCAA Division I All-Americans with 23 All-America performances;
- two Sun Belt Conference team championships (women’s indoor and women’s cross-country);
- 14 Sun Belt Conference individual titles;
- 69 Sun Belt all-conference performances (46 in track and 23 in cross-country);
- 373 Southern Conference individual champion performances;
- 928 Southern Conference all-conference performances;
- 34 Southern Conference MVP athletes; and
- 45 Southern Conference team championships.
In the Southern Conference, the women’s program accomplished seven triple crowns by winning the league title in cross-country, indoor track and outdoor track in the same academic year. Weaver coached many accomplished women, highlighted by All-American Melissa Morrison-Howard, who won 12 SoCon individual titles and went on to earn a pair of Olympic bronze medals, and Mary Jayne Harrelson, the 1999 and 2001 NCAA champion in the 1,500 meters.
After Weaver took over the men’s program in 1995, the Mountaineers produced 10 NCAA Division I All-Americans; nine NCAA All-America performances; 178 Southern Conference individual champion performances; six Sun Belt Conference individual champion performances; 654 Southern Conference all-conference performances; 45 Sun Belt Conference all-conference performances; 29 Southern Conference MVP athletes; 30 Southern Conference team championships; and one Sun Belt Conference team championship. In the SoCon, the men’s program accomplished four triple crowns.
Since joining the Sun Belt Conference, the men’s and women’s teams garnered 20 individual event titles and 100 all-conference honors under Weaver’s direction.
The former coach received several awards while at Appalachian, including one Sun Belt Conference Coach of the Year honor and three Southeast Region Coach of the Year honors, in addition to his 42 Southern Conference Coach of the Year honors.
About Mountaineer Athletics
More than 450 student-athletes compete in 20 NCAA Division I varsity sports at Appalachian State University, 10 for men and 10 for women. Appalachian was a dominant force in the Southern Conference for more than 40 years before joining the Sun Belt Conference in July 2014 — one of 10 conferences that are members of the Division I Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS). The Mountaineer football team claimed back-to-back 10-win seasons and bowl victories in 2015 and 2016, providing a catalyst for comprehensive excellence to grow across all Appalachian sports while competing at the highest levels of college athletics. Learn more at https://www.appstate.edu/athletics.
About Appalachian State University
Appalachian State University, in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Mountains, prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The transformational Appalachian experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and embrace diversity and difference. As one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina System, Appalachian enrolls more than 19,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.
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