Casey Splane, The Circuit
Benedictine Track and Field has started its 2016 campaign under head coach Henry Brun.
He comes to Benedictine after previously serving as associate head coach at NCAA Division III Adrian College in Adrian, Michigan.
Brun was hired in the June of 2015 after former head coach Darren Schmitz resigned mid-season.
While at Adrian, he was responsible for coaching multiple events including sprinters, hurdles, jumps, and relays. On top of those duties, he was also responsible for handling fundraising and recruiting for the program.
Brun was an All-American triple jumper at the Division III level for Alma College, and also served four years in the Air Force.
Following his hire, Brun brought in other coaches to help spread the coaching load.
Jeffery Chanay was added to the staff as an assistant coach and will focus on pole vaulting. Hana Hunt was added as a graduate assistant, and will focus on hurdles.
“I made sure the type of person I wanted to bring in could have control over their program,” Brun said.
Brun has turned his focus to working with the sprinters and still handles the recruiting. In a sense, his recruiting style is a little different than most coaches.
“Knowing it’s a small private school, I really look for what the school’s looking for. Then I look for what I’m looking for,” he said. “Number one is the academic résumé and second is making sure the athlete understands the culture and what Benedictine College is all about.”
With 22 seniors on his squad this year, Brun is currently in the process of recruiting upwards of 40 incoming freshman for next year.
“This year and next year will be a lot of learning, but after that the culture we’re building will start to take place,” he said.
Since he has been with Benedictine, Brun has built a full size indoor shot put circle so the throwers can practice inside during the winter. On top of that, he pays for the pole vaulters to work at the University of St. Mary’s in Leavenworth, Kansas at their indoor facility and has worked with the sprinters in the pool at the YMCA in Atchison.
Coming in as a new coach, Brun gave everybody a fair shot.
“I gave everyone a clean slate,” he said. “We started with the basics and we’ve worked our way up.”
The track and field team continue their season in the upcoming Fred Beile Classic on Feb. 6 in Crete, Nebraska.