Wildcats host 11 schools in home meet to begin 2012 indoor season
Sammy Dabbs is entering his first season as an assistant coach at Kentucky and his tenth year working in college athletics. He is responsible for recruiting and coaching the men's sprints, hurdles and relays at Kentucky.
"I really appreciate the opportunity Coach Weber has allowed me here at Kentucky", Dabbs said. "With the resources we have, I believe we will be able to produce a solid group of versatile male sprinters and hurdlers who will be competitive in the conference as well as nationally."
Dabbs has a background in performance training as well as strength and conditioning. His philosophy is based with the overall development of the person, as well as their athletic ability, regardless of event. By teaching the fundamentals of personal development as well as improving a person's overall athletic ability, Dabbs feels it produces a more complete person, on and off the track.
In four seasons of coaching men's and women's sprints, hurdles and relays at North Texas, Dabbs brings an impressive list of accomplishments to Kentucky. His success covers all of the sprint, hurdle and relay disciplines.
6 NCAA Qualifiers 54 NCAA Regional Marks 8 NCAA Provisional Marks 28 Conference Champions 25 School Records 69 All-Conference Awards 9 All-Mid West Regional Performers 6 NCAA West Quarterfinal Qualifiers 1 Jr. National Champion 3 Jr. National Team Members 2 USATF National Participants 3 Sun Belt Most Outstanding Meet Performers 2 Sun Belt High Point Scorers
In four seasons, the women hurdlers dominated the sprint hurdles in the Sun Belt, winning seven of eight conference championships between indoor and outdoor track. In 2008, Lauren Wiggins set the Sun Belt Conference record in the 55H/60H by running 8.25 for 60H. That same year she set the 55H championship record at 7.72 and went on to finish 13th in the 60H at the NCAA Championships. In 2009, she set the 100H outdoor conference championship record by running 13.40 to win the outdoor championship. Not to be outdone, Alysha Adams broke the conference record running 13.29 in 2010, and then shattered that feat in 2011 by running 13.08. She broke Wiggins' 100H outdoor championship record in 2011 by running 13.28. During the 2011 indoor championship, Adams tied Wiggins' 55H championship record of 7.72.
One of Dabbs's most accomplished athletes was the aforementioned Adams. A former walk-on, she finished her career in 2011 having won 12 Sun Belt Conference Championships, 18 All-Conference awards, and holds four school records. She was voted the indoor and outdoor freshmen of the year in 2008, Sun Belt Most Outstanding Performer twice (2010, 2011), and was the Sun Belt high point scorer twice (2010, 2011). During the 2010 and 2011 indoor and outdoor championships, Adams scored a combined 104 points which made her responsible for 26 percent of the women's team points. Adams was the first North Texas athlete in over 20 years to compete in multiple events (100H and 4x100 Relay) at the same NCAA Championships. She twice qualified for the USATF Outdoor Championships in the 100H, advancing to the semifinals in 2010. She was recognized in the June issue of Track and Field News for her efforts at the 2011 Sun Belt Championship, where she won gold in the 100m, 200m, 100H and ran a leg on the winning 4x100 Relay.
Another one of Dabbs' emerging stars was Keyth Talley. The 2009 indoor and outdoor Sun Belt Freshmen of the Year, Talley went on to win the 2009 Jr. National Championship in the 200m. He represented the United States and went on to earn a silver medal in the 200m at the Jr. Pan Am Games (20.76). He combined with three other Team USA members in the 4x100 relay to win a gold medal and establish a new Jr. Pan Am Meet Record (39.06). Talley returned his sophomore year to win the 55m, 200m, and anchored the winning 4x400 Relay at the 2010 Sun Belt Indoor Championship. He set new school records in the 55m, 60m, and 200m dash that season, as well as Sun Belt Championship records in the 55m (6.20) and 200m (20.98). For his efforts, Talley was recognized as the Sun Belt Indoor Most Outstanding Performer. He went on to compete at the NCAA Indoor Championships and finish 13th in the 60m.
Ciara Smith capped off her career by breaking the indoor school record in the 400m and capturing gold in the 400m and 4x400 relay at the 2011 Sun Belt Indoor Championship. In all, Smith finished her career owning both the indoor and outdoor 400m school records, as well as running legs on the indoor and outdoor 4x400 school records. For her career, Smith captured eight conference championships, as well as 12 All-Conference Honors. In 2008, Smith ran a season-best time of 53.41 in the 400m, earning her an NCAA Championships birth.
The 2009 and 2010 seasons saw Dabbs' versatility when his relays burst on to the national scene. In 2009, the foursome of Talley, Ryan Varner, Byron Washington and CJ Fowler finished 11th at the NCAA Championships. That foursome ran three of the fastest times in school history, finishing with a season-best 39.59 at the NCAA meet. In 2010, the combination of Brittani Simmons, Adams, Missy Barnes and Brittany Blaylock ran through the North Texas top performances list. They hold the top-five fastest marks ever ran in the 4x100 in North Texas history, with a best mark of 44.61. That group also finished 11th at the NCAA Championships.
Dabbs spent 13 years on the campus of North Texas as an athlete and coach. As an athlete, Dabbs was a member of two Sun Belt Championships teams (2000, 2002). Dabbs' role in coaching has been largely defined by the work he did under his former head coach Rick Watkins, and hurdle coach and mentor Carl Sheffield. Working with athletes in his own club, as well as with his prep club coaches, Rayford Ross and Mike Hart of the Dallas Gold Track Club, Dabbs formulated his current philosophy.