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Jason Drake
Position: Associate Head Coach
Hometown: Gillette, Wyoming
Alma Mater: Colorado
Graduating Year: 1994
Experience: 6 Years

» Drake Offers Fresh Perspective (GoHuskies.com, 2009)

Veteran distance coach Jason Drake joined the Washington staff in the summer of 2009, bringing more than a decade of experience coaching and recruiting many of the country's best runners. Drake works with head coach Greg Metcalf to develop the men's distance program, in addition to numerous other functions designed to continue the advancement of the Washington track and field program.

Some of the projects Drake oversees in addition to regular coaching and recruiting duties include meet management of Washington's series of renowned meets at the Dempsey Indoor facility, which bring several thousand athletes each year to Seattle. He also handles implementation of Husky track and field and cross country camps, alumni relations, and fundraising for Washington's new outdoor track facility, which broke ground in 2011.

Drake's first season working with Metcalf was a fruitful one, as the men's cross country team qualified for the NCAA Championships, placing 18th overall. The Huskies won the 2010 Notre Dame Invitational, took fifth at the Pre-National Meet and were fourth at the NCAA West Regional, matching their best finish since 1994. On the track, Colton Tully-Doyle set the school record indoors in the 5,000-meters, and made his first NCAA Championship meet indoors. Tully-Doyle was one of six Huskies that made the NCAA Championship West Prelims outdoors from 1,500-meters up to the 10k.

Six more Huskies qualified for NCAA West Prelims in 2011, and indoors James Cameron earned his first All-America First Team honors with an eighth-place finish in the mile at NCAA Indoors. Tully-Doyle also lowered the school's indoor 3k record. The men also ran five of the ten fastest mile times in school history indoors. During the 2012 campaign, the Husky men's distance medley relay smashed the school record, and qualified for NCAA Indoor Nationals, placing 10th despite an opening leg fall.

Drake served the previous seven years as the head distance coach at Washington State, serving as assistant distance coach in charge of the Cougars cross country program the first two seasons before being officially named cross country head coach in 2004. Prior to that Drake began his coaching career at his alma mater, the University of Colorado, where he was an assistant distance coach from 1995-2002 and also served as recruiting coordinator during the final three years of his stint.

Some of Drake's achievements at WSU included leading the men's cross country squad to the NCAA Championships in 2006, its first national meet appearance in eight years and just the second since 1984. Drake mentored Haley Paul to a program-record 14th-place finish at the 2005 NCAA Cross Country Championships and All-America honors. Three more Cougars earned All-American honors on the track under Drake, and Sara Trané won consecutive Pac-10 steeplechase titles in 2007 and 2008. He also coached freshman Joe Abbott to the U.S. Junior 800m title in 2009.

Drake's time at Colorado coincided with one of the most successful runs by any distance program over the past twenty years. The men's team won the NCAA title in 2001, following a runner-up finish in 2000. The Colorado women were team champs in 2000 as well as runners-up in 1995. Both team titles were achieved by athletes recruited and coached in part by Drake under head coach Mark Wetmore. On an individual level, Drake worked with All-Americans Lesley Higgins (second in mile at NCAA Indoor), Steve Slattery (second in steeplechase at NCAA Outdoor), and Sara Gorton (fourth in 5k at NCAA Outdoors).

Born in Aberdeen, S.D., Drake's prep career at Campbell County High School, in Gillette, Wyoming, included seven state titles. He then moved on to Colorado, running middle distance events on the track and for the cross country squad. Drake earned All-America honors as a member of CU's 1994 indoor distance medley relay team and also garnered several Academic All-Big Eight Conference accolades while earning a Bachelor of Science degree in environmental conservation.

In 1999, Drake founded the Colorado Elite Track Club, a nonprofit club for post-collegiate female middle and long distance runners. The club was home for several world-class runners including Shayne Culpepper (2000 Olympic team 1500m and two World Cross Country teams), Janet Trujillo (2002 World Cross Country team and fifth place in 2001 USATF 1500m Outdoor Championships), and Sarah Toland (2002 World Cross Country team).

Drake and his wife Colleen have a seven-year-old daughter Riley and a three-year-old son Benjamin.

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