Coaching Profiles (College Edition!): Wilson Perez, NEC & John Ostler, Plymouth State

perezWilson Perez, New England College

Years Xoaching Xc: 10 Years Coaching College

Other Coaching Gigs, Sports, Schools: Head Track Coach at New England College and Head Coach at Craftsbury Outdoor Center, VT in the summer.


  • 2015 Indoor Track National Qualifier: 11th in the 3000 meter run.
  • 2014 Male Rookie of The Year & 2014 Women’s Runner of The Year.
  • 2014 & 2013 All-Academic Team.
  • 2013 Women’s North Atlantic Conference Cross Country Coach of The Year.
  • 2013 Women’s North Atlantic Conference Champions.
  • 2013 Female Runner of The Year & Rookie of the Year.
  • 2011 & 2012 Women’s North Atlantic Conference runner-up.
  • 2012-2010 Coached both the male and female rookies of the year in (TCCC & NAC).
  • Multiple TCCC and NAC Conference Runners from 2010-2014.
  • Multiple Post Season Qualifiers achieving All-New England and All-ECAC in Track
  • Men’s and Women’s teams set over 20 new indoor track records and over 15 new outdoor records.
  • Currently have coached the most individual men and women in cross country to the top 10 all-time list for New England College.

What got you into coaching?

My love and passion for running and wanting to be able to give back to a sport that has taught me so much about myself.

Where did you get your coaching philosophy?

My coaching philosophy is a potpourri of the best things I have learned over the years and what I expect from my athletes. We hold ourselves to a high standard and remind ourselves to enjoy the process.

Greatest Coaching Achievement:

Women’s Team won the conference title in just my second year at New England College

Greatest Coaching Moment:

Coached Sophomore at the time Abby Shafer(now a JR) to 17:06 in the 5k at the Penn Relays.

Strength of Your Program:

Our work ethic and camaraderie

Favorite Workout:


Words of Wisdom:

Don’t every give up on yourself and continue to strive to be your best. When your injured or hurt you could be at a super low watching your teammates continue to improve but you need to remind yourself you are going to bounce back stronger than ever!

How do you pump up the team before a big race?

Remind them they are in great shape and to believe in the process. We have a group clap, a few words of wisdom and then it’s down to business.

Three athletes you would love to have dinner with:

Steve Prefontaine, Michael Jordan and Mohamed Ali

Coach you look up to:

Lynn Jennings

John Ostler, Plymouth State Universityostler

Years Coaching XC: 7

Other Coaching Gigs, Sports, Schools:

Assistant Cross Country and Track and Field Coach at U-32 High School in Montpelier, VT

Assistant Cross Country and Track and Field Coach at Hamilton College in Clinton, NY

I also coached a youth basketball team to a 6-0 season when I was in high school. No big deal J

What got you into coaching?

A love for cross country and track and field. A desire to give to student-athletes what my high school and college coaches gave to me, a great experience as a runner.

Where did you get your coaching philosophy?

Mostly from my own moral code and belief of what athletics should be for a student-athlete. Beyond that, I steal from every good coach I come in contact with. I’ve taken important lessons from each coach I’ve had or worked with. Anytime a coach shares training advice or wisdom on how to help kids I try to make a note of it.

Greatest Coaching Achievement

Being hired as Plymouth State University’s Head Cross Country and Track and Field coach. Any coach will tell you, it’s a lot of hard work and sacrifice to make coaching a career. The day I was offered this job was the day I realized I could spend my life doing what I loved. I was also honored that Plymouth trusted me to run a program with such potential. Everyone here has high expectations for what Plymouth Cross Country and Track and Field can become, I was humbled that they believed I could help them reach their goals.

Greatest Coaching Moment

Too many to pick one. It’s always special to be involved when an athlete qualifies for a national championship. Each time I’ve been able to go to nationals I always try to soak it in because it’s a great accomplishment for the athlete and I’m thrilled to play a role in his/her success.

Strength of Your Program

Commitment. Everyone we choose to involve with our team is dedicated to help our athletes achieve our team goals. Plymouth has passionate athletes, administrators, trainers, coaches and support staff that that is focused on success in all forms. Also, it doesn’t hurt that we have miles of beautiful trails and rural roads for the distance runners and a brand new indoor track and field facility for the sprints and field events.

Favorite Workout

The next one. Every workout we do has a specific purpose and is integral to reaching our goals. Of course I have some workouts I really look forward to but I constantly have to remind myself that one workout doesn’t make a season. I don’t want to have a “signature workout” because, one season down the road, that session won’t be appropriate for the group of athletes I’m working with or it won’t fit into our training cycle and I don’t want to feel like I need to force it.

How do you pump up the team before a big race?

A couple days out I remind my athlete of the work she put in and look back at the high points in the training cycle, whether it’s a good series of workouts she had or a recent breakthrough race. For me, it’s more about putting them in a positive mental state. I don’t want them pumped up. I want them relaxed, confident and ready to run a well-paced race.

Coach you look up to:

Can I pick three?

My Dad. He was a great youth coach. He knew when to push me and when to let me just have fun. He never coached me in XC or track but the things I learned from him in Basketball and Baseball practices helped me later on when I switched my focus to running.

My high school coach, Mark Churchill. He helped me discover my love of running and especially cross country. If I had any other cross country coach my freshman year of high school I’d be working at a boring desk job right now trying to forget all the times I struck out in JV Baseball.

My college coach, John Newman. He has a fierce, quiet passion for his team. He is great at giving steely, confident pre-race talks. On the flip side, once the gun went off it always gave me a boost to glimpse him on the side of the course or inside of the track going nuts cheering for me and my teammates.

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