Tide Women's Track Coach Steps Down

Alabama will have either a new head coach for both men's and women's track and field or new coaches for both men's and women's teams next season. It was announced Tuesday that Sandy Fowler, will not return as Crimson Tide women's track and field head coach. Earlier it had been announced that Harvey Glance would not return in 2011-12 as head coach of the Bama men's track and field team.

Fowler, who is in her 14th season at The Capstone, has been the head coach of the women's track and field program since July 1, 1997.

At one time, the men's and women's teams were combined at Alabama, as the swimming and diving program is now. Track and swimming lend themselves to a combined program because of so many meets in which there are competitions for both men and women.

Other sports in which there are both men's and women's teams -- basketball, of course, and golf and tennis -- have separate programs.

There has been no indication from the athletics department on how the positions might be filled or even when that might occur.

"When I took over as head coach at Alabama in 1997 I could not have envisioned everything we have been able to accomplish," Fowler said. "The kudos for our success belongs to all the student-athletes that have believed in our philosophy and kept the program moving forward. But there comes a time in life when you need a new challenge and a chance to reassess your priorities and your career objectives. This is such a time for me.

"Coaching this program has been so much more than just a title or a position. It has allowed me the chance to impact so many of my student-athletes in a positive way and, in turn, they have impacted me powerfully. It's been quite a run for us, but it is time for me to move ahead with other opportunities and challenges in track and field."

Fowler, who has served as an assistant or head coach of numerous United States national teams including positions on the U.S. staff at the 2000 Summer Olympic Games, the 2007 World Championships and the upcoming 2011 Pan American Games.

"Sandy Fowler has represented Alabama track and field with remarkable integrity and passion for the last 14 years," said UA Director of Athletics Mal Moore. "Her enthusiasm, passion and love for her student-athletes has always stood out. On behalf of our entire program I want to thank Sandy for her tireless effort, commitment and dedication. We all wish her nothing but the very best in the future."

"I'll remain in coaching, just not in the present position at Alabama," Fowler said. "I can't adequately convey my thanks to the University of Alabama, Coach Mal Moore, all of our student-athletes that have been a part of the Alabama track and field program during my tenure, and all of the UA track and field supporters and alumni for their unwavering support and efforts throughout the years."

During Fowler's tenure in Tuscaloosa, the Crimson Tide has produced almost 30 All-Americans, one NCAA individual champion, one NCAA Top 8 Award winner, more than 40 All-SEC honorees, and more than 100 members of the SEC Academic Honor Roll.

A native of Brookline, Mass., and an alternate for the 1980 U.S. Olympic Team in the shot put, Fowler has been inducted into numerous halls of fame including the Northeastern University Hall of Fame in 1988, Massachusetts State Track Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 2007 and the 2011 Drake Relays Hall of Fame.

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