UNC Track & Field Staff
Mark VanAlstyne
Head XC Coach, Asst. Coach Track & Field (Distance)

Mark VanAlstyne is in his second year as the head cross country and distance coach for the University of North Carolina track and field and cross country programs. Prior to Carolina, he served 21 seasons at the helm of North Florida's track and field program.

During the 2013 cross country season, VanAlstyne coached the men's cross country team to their first NCAA National Championship berth since 1992 ultimately finishing 17th in the nation. His guidance during the 2013 season also saw Annie LeHardy earn All-American honors as she placed 25th. Carolina cross country runners earned six All-ACC honors (Annie LeHardy, Lizzy Whelan, Ryan Walling, John Raneri, Pat Schellberg, Isaac Presson) and five All-Region honors (Annie LeHardy, Lizzy Whelan, Ryan Walling, John Raneri, Isaac Presson).

The 2012-13 seasons for Carolina distance saw Pat Schellberg earning All-ACC honors at the conference cross country meet, an All-America in Lianne Farber for cross country and ACC Championships in the indoor mile and the outdoor 1,500, as well as 12 All-ACC Academic honors through the cross country, indoor and outdoor season. VanAlstyne coached a USTFCCCA All-Academic women's team with Farber earning individual USTFCCCA All-Academic honors for the 2012 cross country season. He also coached Isaac Presson to the first sub-four minute mile by a Tar Heel since Tony Waldrop and Reggie McAfee in the early 1970s. VanAlstyne's tutelage saw Farber and Presson compete at the 2013 USA Track & Field National Championships.

VanAlstyne coached seven Tar Heels to the first round of the NCAA National Championships, including Lizzy Whelan in the 800, Annie LeHardy in the 1,500, Isaac Presson in the 1,500, Steve Magnuson in the steeplechase, John Raneri in the 5,000, Matt Valeriani in the 10,000, and Lianne Farber in the 1,500 who went on to compete at the national championships

VanAlstyne acted as an assistant athletic director at North Florida and was essential in transitioning the program from NCAA Division II to Division I in 2005. He coached six national champions, 35 All-Americas in track and 12 All-Americas in cross country while leading the Ospreys. One of VanAlstyne's athletes went on to win a U.S. Championship while another gained a berth in the 2004 Olympic Marathon.

VanAlstyne has accrued numerous coaching honors, including the 2002 NCAA South Region Coach of the Year, 2003 Peach Belt Conference Women's Cross Country Coach of the Year and the 2010 Atlantic Sun Conference Women's Cross Country Coach of the Year. In 2010 he also coached the women's team to its first conference title.

VanAlstyne was inducted into the North Florida Hall of Fame in October of 2013 for his coaching and athletic accomplishments.

A graduate of North Florida and a former stand-out athlete there, VanAlstyne holds the school record for the marathon while his 10,000 meters time ranks third all-time in the school record books. VanAlstyne is married to Patty, who was a six-time All-America track & field athlete at North Florida. They have a son, Daniel, and a daughter, Kaley.

Follow Coach VanAlstyne on Twitter or friend him on Facebook.


Position: Head XC Coach, Asst. Coach Track & Field (Distance)
Experience: 2 Years
Phone: 919-962-5215
Email: coachmva@unc.edu
UNC North Carolina Track & Field

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