Ohio State track and field hosts the Buckeye Classic at French Field House.
Photos by Jeff Mills
Rob Banhagel is in his third season as a volunteer assistant for the Ohio State track and field program. He works with the Buckeye pole vaulters and decathletes.
Prior to Ohio State, Banhagel coached at Gahanna Lincoln High School in Gahanna, Ohio. While at Gahanna, Banhagel gained national recognition while working with Jacob Blankenship, who broke meet, school, conference, divisional, regional and state records. Blankenship was a 2012 OATCCC indoor state champion and indoor state record holder, two-time OHSAA state outdoor champion and outdoor state record holder, and a member of the USA Today All-USA track and field team (2011 and 2012). Blankenship ended the 2012 indoor season ranked No. 3 in the nation with a vault of 5.35 meters (17-6.50) and finished the 2012 outdoor season ranked No. 3 in the nation with a vault of 5.23 meters (17-2.00). He competed at the IAAF World Youth Games, where he won a bronze medal, and was an indoor and outdoor New Balance national champion.
As a student-athlete, Banhagel competed at Western Michigan University and Cuesta College in San Luis Obispo, Calif. At Cuesta College, he trained under Jan Johnson, the 1972 Olympic bronze medalist and a former world-record holder. Banhagel traveled the U.S. with Johnson as an assistant coach for Sky Jumpers pole vault camps. He was a member of the Cal Poly-Cuesta College pole vault surge during the early 1990s and held the school record in the pole vault at Cuesta College for seven years with a jump of 5.08 meters (16-8.00). He is still listed in the Top 30 Central Coast all-time list. His all-time personal-best mark is 5.35 meters (17-6.50).
Banhagel has his track and field technical certification through USTFCCCA and has been in a coaching capacity for more than 10 years.