In that capacity, Steele will be responsible for managing the day-to-day operation of the men's and women's track and field teams. His promotion is another important step toward establishing Oregon track and field as the premier program in the country.
Lananna, who has provided the leadership and vision necessary to help revitalize track and field at the local as well as the national levels, was instrumental in organizing efforts to help Eugene/Springfield secure the 2008 U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials June 27-July 6. He will continue to oversee the Ducks' program while also concentrating on the continued development of Hayward Field and the long-term success of track and field at the University of Oregon.
"I am confident that Dan Steele is an excellent choice to oversee the daily coaching, recruiting, and administrative decisions necessary for the University of Oregon track and field teams to be successful," said Lananna. "He has demonstrated throughout this athletic and professional career that he knows how to win, and his passion for the University of Oregon is boundless."
Steele has quickly emerged as one of the nation's most respected assistant coaches. Athletes under his guidance have captured four NCAA and nine Pacific-10 Conference individual titles, earned 41 All-America honors, and broken school records 25 times. In 2005 and 2007, he was honored as the NCAA West Region Assistant Coach of the Year in the category of men's sprints and hurdles while playing a pivotal role in the Pac-10 team titles captured by the men's track and field team in those years.
The Moline, Ill., native has overseen the men's sprinters and hurdlers in his five seasons as a full-time Oregon assistant coach, in addition to the men's and women's pole vaulters. Prior to that, he served as a volunteer assistant for the program in 2001.
"We have a special program and Vin has created a structure that maximizes our ability to become an unprecedented leader in the sport of track and field," said Athletics Director Pat Kilkenny. "While Vin focuses on the long-range vision for our program and its role at the University, in this community, and in the entire sport, Dan will be ensuring that the plans for our teams' success are implemented successfully on a daily basis."
"I am excited by the opportunity that the University of Oregon and Vin have provided me," Steele said. "Vin has articulated an ambitious vision for our program, and I am eager to work together with him and the staff on making it happen."
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