Josh Streeter

(Rock Hill, S.C.) — The Winthrop University track and field team has brought in a familiar face as an assistant coach, as former sprinter Jeremy Falwell was hired in the spring to coach the team’s sprinters, hurdlers and jumpers.

Falwell, who competed for the Eagles for four years and earned a bachelor’s degree from Winthrop in 2020, now has a full season to help prepare his team to compete in the Big South Conference, after previously serving as a graduate assistant.

“On the men’s side we are going to do fairly well. I hope to kind of shake up the Big South a little bit,” Falwell said. “We’ve been towards the bottom of the rankings the past few years, so I think we can sneak to, like the top half, maybe top three, if all things go right.”

The returning track athletes say they’re excited to work with Falwell, as they look to make improvements this season.

“I think that he is going to be very helpful when it comes to developing our racing techniques. I think we should be able to focus on each of the aspects of the race and the different portions of the race,” said Bautista Vivanco, a senior from Argentina.

Vivanco, who competes in the 400-meter hurdles, said he hopes to have a record-breaking season.

“I would love to break the school record in the both indoor and outdoor 4×400-meter relay race,” he said. “I think he could also help us, me and the rest of the hurdlers, develop a much better and smoother hurdling technique. Which I think is something we really need at this time”

Other runners say some of the changes made by Falwell are a positive thing for the team, as they prepare for the season.

“He came in and changed the warmups and how we practice in groups in a great way and I think his methods will help us, mostly me, to be a better version of myself,” said Calvin Johnson, a junior sprinter who competes in the 400-meters.

“One of my main goals is to get to know my teammates better and win meets and have a better foundation,” Johnson said. “Also, have a better bond with the team, to where we worry about winning the conference.”

The Winthrop track and field team will compete in its first meet in December at Appalachian State.