Spartans add six medals to close out the final day of competition at the conference meet.
James improves MSU discus record and several Spartans break personal records in Saturday's competition.
Spartans post strong performances at both the Silverston and Alex Wilson Invite.
• 2013 Division II Men's Indoor Assistant Coach of the Year
• 2013 Division II Women's Outdoor Assistant Coach of the Year
• 2013 USTFCCCA Midwest Region Men's Assistant Coach of the Year
• 20 NCAA Division II All-Americans
• 7 Individual NCAA Division II Individual Championship Titles
• 7 NCAA Division I Outdoor Championship Qualifiers
• 5 NCAA Division I Indoor Championship Qualifiers
• 5 Individual NCAA Division I Indoor All-Americans
• 4 Big Ten Individual Champions
• 1 All-Big Ten Performer
• 1 Individual NCAA Division I Outdoor All-American
• 1 Big Ten Freshman of the Year
Blaine Maag enters his third season at Michigan State, overseeing the throwing events. He previously spent two seasons at Grand Valley State University and was honored as the 2013 Division II Men's Indoor and Women's Outdoor Assistant Coach of the Year before arriving in East Lansing in 2015.
Maag continued to build upon a strong first year with the Spartans by coaching a pair of indoor All-Americans in the weight throw at the 2016 NCAA Indoor Championships. Vinny Gjokaj recorded a 21.15m (69-4.75) to finish ninth, while Connor Kostrzewa took 13th with a heave of 20.43m.
In his second season with the Green and White, Maag guided a total of five NCAA Championships qualifiers (four outdoor, one indoor). Antonio James notched his third indoor All-America honor, posting a mark of 20.78m to finish 11th in the field.
During the 2015 outdoor season, James set a Michigan State track & field school record in the discus to lead to a fourth place finish on the third day of the NCAA Championships. With a throw of 60.99m (200-1), James broke his own school record, which was 60.65m en route to winning the Big Ten Championship in May.
Katelyn Daniels delivered an MSU and Big Ten meet record throw of 59.06 meters in the women's discus for her first career conference championship, earning 2015 Big Ten Freshman of the Year under Maag’s tutelage. Along with Daniel’s accolades, Cynthia Watt claimed top honors in the women's weight throw with a distance of 65.03 meters at the 2015 Big Ten Outdoor Championships. The throw set a new Big Ten Championship record, topping the old mark of 64.62m set by Ohio State's Alexis Thomas in 2012, as well as a new Ralph Young Track and Field facility record.
Maag’s first year at MSU in 2014 saw an indoor Big Ten Championship and indoor All-American performance by James. He was the conference champion in the shot put at the Big Ten Indoor Championship with a school record distance of 19.93m (65-4.75). James went on to finish fourth at the NCAA Division I Indoor Track a Field Championships in the weight throw with a mark of 22.42m (73-6.75). James’ indoor campaign under Maag ended with a pair of All-American honors in the weight throw and shot put. James continued the momentum into the outdoor season, notching All-American Honorable Mention status in both the shot put and discus.
During his tenure at GVSU, Maag coached 20 NCAA Division II All-Americans and seven NCAA Division II Champions, including Sam Lockhart (2013 outdoor shot put and discus, indoor shot put and weight throw and 2012 indoor weight throw title), Lauren Buresh (2012 indoor shot put title) and Liz Murphy (2012 outdoor hammer title). Lockhart also went on to compete at the 2012 USA Olympic Trials, finishing 19th in the discus. She qualified for the trials by having a discus toss of 57.11m during the Ashland Summer Series.
Maag competed in throws events during his collegiate career at Ashland and was part of four Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) championship teams at AU. He was named a 2008 outdoor track & field All-American in the discus, placing eighth at that year's competition. In 2010, Maag received All-American honors in the discus as well, finishing sixth.
Maag graduated from Ashland University in 2010 with a bachelor's degree in exercise science. Maag is from Columbus Grove, Ohio, and is married to the former Ariana Kidder. They have two daughters, Carsyn, two years old, and Kennedy, rest in Heaven.