Just last spring, William Carey University dominated the 2020 NAIA Indoor Track & Field National Championship. With the guidance of Assistant Coach Malcolm Dias, his sprinters were able to capture 7 Individual National titles and multiple school records at the 2020 Indoor National Championships.
The process takes time, extraordinary effort, and shortcuts cannot take the place of actual hours of practice. In track and field, one cannot cut corners and expect to qualify for the National Championships. The former track and field athlete-turned-coach starts the journey to the championship by making sure he has the right people with him. It does not mean recruiting only those with exceptional skills; it means recruiting athletes who are more than willing to make the necessary sacrifices that these demanding competitions entail.
Dias emphasizes that an incredible team starts from the top. “I’ve been blessed to have the opportunity to work at William Carey University along with extraordinary coaches: Coach Blake Hegstrom, Coach Ryan McKenzie, and Coach Jason Simpson. We make an incredible coaching team and have each other’s backs. Starting with Head Coach, Hegstrom, who puts in countless hours making sure everything runs smoothly to our Jumps Coach, McKenzie, who cares an incredible amount about his athletes and to our phenomenal Strength Coach, Simpson. None of this would be possible without them. To them, it’s bigger than just sports. Our goals are to raise future leaders and teach life lessons through track & field.”
Dias coaches the sprints, hurdles, and relay events using his past running experience as well as the knowledge he has gained over the past couple of years. When it comes to coaching, his biggest pet peeve is when a student comes late to practice. “I sound like a broken record sometimes, but my athletes know that I’m trying to instill in them life lessons that go beyond Track & Field,” says Dias. After receiving multiple awards as the National Assistant Coach of the Year and Regional Assistant Coach of the Year, Dias has mastered the art of effectively coaching athletes towards championships. He knows when he sees a potential champion, and he does not stop until such an athlete sees himself on the pedestal as well. Dias also knows that champions are not born; they are made. With that, he believes that every athlete has the potential to improve their performance, but it is a two-way street. The coach can only provide the necessary tools. It’s up to the athletes to put in the hard work. The road to a championship may be tough, but athletes and coaches know that in the end, the countless hours of grinding and hustle are more than worth it.
For more information about Coach Dias, he can be contacted through Instagram here.