FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – This weekend when University of Arkansas hosts the 2023 Southeastern Conference Indoor Track and Field Championships, student-athletes will be competing on the Lance Harter Track at the Randal Tyson Track Center for the very first time.
University of Arkansas Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Hunter Yurachek announced that the indoor oval at the Razorbacks’ indoor track facility has been named – Lance Harter Track at the Randal Tyson Track Center – in recognition of the extraordinary career of Arkansas women’s cross country and track and field coach Lance Harter.
“For more than three decades, Lance Harter has defined success in women’s track and field at the University of Arkansas, within the Southeastern Conference and throughout the nation,” Yurachek said. “His remarkable coaching career has resulted in six national championships, more than 40 conference championships and countless All-Americans, NCAA champions, Olympians and record holders.
“Along the way he has invested in the lives of the young women he has coached, his staff and all those affiliated with the Razorback women’s track and field program. Coach Harter has left an indelible mark on our program and it is only fitting that his signature will now be affixed to the track at the Randal Tyson Track Center for generations to come.”
The most successful coach in University of Arkansas and SEC women’s cross country and track and field history, Harter is in his 33rd year at the helm of the Razorbacks program. The 2022-23 campaign will be his final season as Arkansas head coach. Longtime assistant and current associate head coach Chris Johnson has been named the next head coach of the Razorback women’s track and field program.
The naming announcement for the track came as part of a retirement celebration held for Coach Harter in advance of the SEC Championships set to begin on Friday. A formal resolution adopting the name change will be considered by the University of Arkansas Board of Trustees at its next scheduled meeting in March.
Harter’s extraordinary coaching career at Arkansas has included leading the Razorbacks to six NCAA Championships and 43 SEC Championships. The NCAA titles have occurred in each discipline, with three at NCAA Indoor, two at NCAA Outdoor and one NCAA Cross Country. Among SEC titles claimed by the Razorbacks, there have been 22 in cross country, 12 indoor and nine outdoor.
In 2019, the Razorbacks completed a sweep of all three NCAA Championships in a calendar year, becoming only the second women’s program to accomplish the feat and the first since 1986. During the 2020-21 season, the Razorbacks achieved a seventh SEC triple crown under Harter.
During the 2021-22 season, Arkansas claimed its first Terry Crawford Program of the Year accolade, which tabulates a team’s finish in the three NCAA Championships held each school year.
Harter was inducted into the USTFCCCA Coaches Hall of Fame on December 15, 2014, at the organization’s convention in Phoenix. He is also a member of the Arkansas Sports Hall of Honor, Mt. SAC Relays Hall of Fame and Cal Poly Hall of Fame.
In November of 2020, Harter was selected to the 2021 induction class of the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony was held in April of 2021.
During his tenure, his programs won every conference title from the 2014 SEC Outdoor Championships to the 2018 SEC Indoor Championships, winning 12 straight titles, and became the first program since LSU in 1987-91 to four-peat at the conference outdoor championships in 2017. Current SEC championship streaks for Arkansas include nine consecutive cross country titles and seven consecutive indoor championships.
In winning the 2021 SEC Cross Country Championship and 2022 SEC Indoor title, it marked the 22nd and 12th league titles for Arkansas in those respective disciplines. The Razorback women claimed 22 of the past 24 conference meets held in cross country, indoor and outdoor track and field, dating back to the 2014 SEC Outdoor title.
Prior to the 2019 sweep of NCAA titles, Harter cemented his place in Razorback history in 2015 by winning the NCAA Indoor championship, the first-ever title by a women’s program at UA, and in 2016 won the NCAA Outdoor title. With six national championships, he remains the only coach of a women’s program to win a title.
Overall, Harter has guided Arkansas to 37 top-10 NCAA finishes (12 cross country, 17 indoor track and eight outdoor) in his tenure including 23 top-five performances. In 2019, Harter’s teams swept all three SEC and three NCAA titles earning him SEC Coach of the Year and National Coach of the Year honors for each championship.
Lance Harter Accomplishments
National Championships (6)
· 2015 NCAA Indoor Champions
· 2016 NCAA Outdoor Champions
· 2019 NCAA Indoor Champions
· 2019 NCAA Outdoor Champions
· 2019 NCAA Cross Country Champions
· 2021 NCAA Indoor Champions
Conference Championships (43)
|Cross Country (22)||1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021|
|Indoor (12)||2000, 2001, 2003, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022|
|Outdoor (9)||2000, 2001, 2004, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019, 2021|
Regional Championships (24)
|Cross Country||1990, 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021, 2022|
Coach of the Year Awards (44)
|SEC Cross Country (22)||1991, 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021|
|SEC Indoor (12)||1998, 2000, 2001, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022|
|SEC Outdoor (9)||2000, 2001, 2004, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019, 2021|