Paradise Valley Community College’s cross country and track and field Coach David Barney has been inducted in the Arizona Runner’s Hall of Fame for his significant contribution to the sport of running. He was inducted Sunday, Nov. 4, at the 3TV Phoenix 10K and Half Marathon along with the legendary Olympian Jesse Owens; former Arizona State University administrator Herman Frazier; and ASU graduate/Olympian Lynn Nelson Stott.
As PVCC’s first and only cross country and track and field coach, Barney has been honored eight times as the NJCAA Cross Country National Coach of the Year and most recently was named Indoor Track and Field National Coach of the Year.
“Dave is a very focused, driven, goal-oriented and obviously very successful coach. Those characteristics are reflected by the teams and individuals he has coached and are easy to identify in them. His teams and individuals have consistently demonstrated that through work ethic, commitment to and belief in each other that their goals can be achieved,” said PVCC Athletic Director Greg Silcox.
Barney’s men’s and women’s cross country teams have claimed eight national championships and finished second six times since 1996. Three PVCC runners have captured Individual National Championships; 31 have earned All-American honors; and the Puma cross-country teams have claimed 12 of 14 possible Region I Championships.
Barney also developed a successful Track and Field program. The Pumas have been in the top 10 at the NJCAA National meet eight times and numerous PVCC athletes have excelled with 15 Individual National Championships and 75 All-American awards.
Coach Barney grew up in Arizona and has strong ties to its running community as both a coach and an athlete. He was a state cross country and track and field champion and junior college national champion. He was an All-American athlete at the University of Arkansas, competed in the U.S. Olympic Trials four times and is a two-time member of the U.S. National team in the World Championships.
“I’m very humbled to be included with this group that’s being inducted,” said Barney. “It’s a nice honor for me and good reflection of our program at Paradise Valley. It’s not just a reflection of my running, but of our program. We’ve had such great support since I was hired in 1995 when Cindy Shoenhair was the first athletic director. It’s not just me, it’s our whole program that makes us look so good, which makes me look good and allows me to get this recognition.”
PVCC athletes coached by Barney over the years have become individual champions with illustrious university athletic careers and some have even competed at the Olympic level. Beyond running, they became coaches, doctors, physical therapists and engineers with successful academic and professional careers.
“We’ve had some super kids,” Barney said. “We’re developing leaders who understand beyond just running fast. If I can get them to take those principals and apply them elsewhere, apply them to their life, I’ve done a much better job than get them to run fast during the two years they’re here.”
Also inducted into Hall of Fame were:
Jesse Owens, an iconic figure in American sports history. As an Ohio State University student in 1935, Owens set three world records and tied a fourth at the Big Ten Track and Field Championships. The following year, Owens won four gold medals at the 1936 Berlin Olympics becoming the first person to accomplish that feat. President Ford honored Owens in 1976 by presenting him with the Presidential Medal of Freedom award. Three years later, President Carter recognized Owens with the Living Legend Award. Owens died in Tucson from lung cancer in 1980. A year later, USA Track and Field established the Jesse Owens award, which is given to the top track and field athletes in the United States every year.
Herman Frazier, a legendary former Arizona State University athlete and administrator. As a student, Frazier was an eight-time All American in track and field. In 1976, he performed on the world stage as the leadoff runner on the 4 x 400 USA relay team, which took home the gold medal from the Montreal Olympics. After graduating, Frazier remained at Arizona State, first as a graduate assistant for track and field, then as assistant director of events and facilities. He finished a 23-year career with the Sun Devils as the senior associate athletics director for business operations. In 2004, Frazier was selected Chef De Mission for the USA Olympic team that competed in Athens. Frazier is currently deputy athletics director/chief of staff at Syracuse University.
Lynn Nelson Stott, an Arizona State University graduate, has won the Phoenix 10K four times, more than any other woman. Stott is an Olympic athlete who competed in the 1988 Seoul games and was selected as an alternate for the 1996 Atlanta games. After a couple of knee and foot operations, Stott had to give up running, but now competes in mountain biking. Stott lives in Boise, Idaho, where she manages a web design and development business.
Coach Barney was not able to attend the induction ceremony, so the award was accepted on his behalf by former PVCC student Jany Deng, who ran as a Puma from 1999 to 2001. Deng graduated from Arizona State University, owns his own transportation business and has run the Arizona Lost Boy’s Center for several years. He recently met with the President of South Sudan as that newly formed country tries to recruit American educated Sudanese to return to their home-land to build a country where poverty and civil strife will no longer exist.