Hall Of Fame Spotlight – Vickers Set The Throws Bar High

Hall Of Fame Spotlight – Vickers Set The Throws Bar High



The line of Ashland University national-championship/All-American throwers is a pretty lengthy one.

The line of Ashland University national-championship/All-American throwers to earn those honors in three events is much shorter.

Bryan Vickers, who will be inducted into Ashland's Hall of Fame on Oct. 12, won four NCAA Division II championships (three in the shot put, one in the weight throw) and earned 15 All-American citations between the shot, weight and discus.

Despite all of that, Vickers is humble when discussing his place in AU throws history.

"Me personally, I don't think I'm worthy compared to some of the other names that have come through there," Vickers said. "They were the individuals that motivated me. It made me focus and work hard and try to give back to my fellow teammates as much as possible."

Vickers' list of honors includes U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Men's Indoor Field Athlete of the Year and GLIAC Indoor Men's Field Athlete of the Meet in 2008, GLIAC Outdoor Men's Field Athlete of the Meet in 2007, and GLIAC Outdoor Men's Freshman of the Meet in 2005.

On the all-time Division II shot put rolls, Vickers remains No. 6 indoors (19.60 meters/64-feet-3¾) and No. 7 outdoors (19.84 meters/65-feet-1¼).

"I'm very appreciative and glad to still be up there, but records are meant to be broken, and the sport evolves and the sport keeps getting better and better," said Vickers, who said he hopes he will be knocked further and further down those lists.

Said Ashland head track and field coach Jud Logan, "Coming in, we knew we had a talented, big-bodied kid who was looking for a private education and still be able to compete in athletics at the highest level. When we recruited him, we didn't know that he was going to be the great shot putter that he was, but he was also a great weight thrower and multiple All-American in the discus, as well.

"So, in our throws program, where you have people like Adriane (Blewitt Wilson) and Jackie (Jeschelnig-Ulm), who were 13-time All-Americans, Bryan was 15-time. Somebody who led from his behavior, and not from a rah-rah standpoint."

Vickers accomplished all of that while not having the opportunity to compete or practice at the track program's relatively-still-new digs on Broad Street – he did it at the famous farm at which throwers practiced before then.

"The environment, the total environment – with us not having a track or the facility that they do now, the environment," Vickers said. "We had to go to the farm to practice the hammer. Some people might not like it or look down on it. It was one of the unique aspects at the time.

"It was a very fun place."

Vickers learned much at the feet of Logan during his five years in the program.

"The amount of knowledge and information that Jud has, and could recite information and things and be able to explain them very well, was impressive," said Vickers. "He was able to break them down and convey them into a clear message that translated well, which makes him a great coach. And if he didn't know, he would try to put you in a position where he and the athlete would learn.

"Good coaching…it comes down to motivation. You have to put in a few extra hours here and there for the third event, on off-days and things of that nature. You have to find the time, and the discipline and dedication to do it. Jud always said champions are made when no one is watching. I took that to heart and still use that today."

As for when Vickers is in the Faculty Room at the John C. Myers Convocation Center for induction, he said, "It's a big honor. All I did in college was work hard and enjoyed it, and did the best that I could. Not to do it for recognition and glory, but I am getting recognition for that hard work."