Columbus, Ohio – Khadevis Robinson, a two-time Olympian and eight-time U.S. national champion in the 800m run, has been named the head cross country coach at Ohio State, Karen Dennis, director of track & field and cross country, announced on Tuesday. Robinson spent a short, but successful season in Columbus during the 2012-13 academic year at Ohio State coaching the cross country teams and the distance events during the track season.
“During that brief year Khadevis spent with our distance runners, he brought a fresh and innovative approach to our student-athletes with improved performances,” Dennis said. “I’m extremely happy to have him back to lead our men’s and women’s cross country teams and middle distance runners.
“Over the past several years, I’ve watched him become one of the best coaches in the distance running events. He’s a high energy individual and an extremely effective recruiter.”
During the 2013 track season overseeing the Buckeyes, Robinson helped mid-distance superstar Katie Borchers set two school records in the 800m run that she would eventually lower in the following years. Two other runners during the 2013 track season etched their names in the record books under the tutelage of Robinson: Janel Olberding clocked the No. 3 indoor 800m run time in school history with a 2:07.58, and Michelle Thomas registered a career best of 16:44.52 in the 5,000m run to rank No. 4 all-time at Ohio State.
He also coached a young Buckeye squad to great success during the 2012 cross country season as Ohio State claimed a pair of sixth-place team finishes at the Big Ten Championships and the NCAA Great Lakes Regional. That included junior Meredith Wagner and sophomore Michelle Thomas earning all-region honors and Wagner adding a Second Team All-Big Ten selection for her performance.
“I’m extremely excited to be coming back to Ohio State,” Robinson said. “Everyone on the staff and in Buckeye Nation operate like a family. It means a lot to me that I’ll be able to work at a university that stresses education, diversity, and supports the pursuit of excellence. It’s a blessing to be a part of such an honored tradition.”
Robinson’s pedigree on the track during his career is often unparalleled. Considered to be one of the top mid-distance American athletes from 1999-2012, Robinson represented Team USA at the World Outdoor Championships seven times during his illustrious career, including trips to Athens and London for the Olympic Games in the 800m run.
Robinson went out on top of the collegiate ranks after winning an NCAA title during his senior year in the 800m run for TCU in 1998 with a clocking of 1:46.04. The following year, Robinson swept both the indoor and outdoor national titles at the USATF Championships. He would end up winning six more national titles in the event during a stretch from 2005-09. In addition to all those titles he accumulated, Robinson was a six-time silver medalist in the 800m run at the USATF Outdoor Championships.
During his time in Baton Rouge as an assistant at LSU over the past four seasons, Robinson coached two SEC champions, helped runners set four school records, and earn three All-American honors. Robinson helped Blair Henderson (indoor 800m run) and Morgan Schuetz (indoor mile) set school records in their respective events. Schuetz played an influential role in helping the women’s distance medley relay earn back-to-back berths at the NCAA Indoor Championships for the first time in program history while also setting the school record. Robinson also helped the men’s distance medley relay set the school record during his tenure in Baton Rouge.
The aforementioned Schuetz (ninth place) and Henderson (seventh place) both earned All-America honors in the 800m run at the 2017 NCAA Indoor Championships this spring. In addition to those two, Robinson coached a freshman, Ruby Stauber, to a fifth-place finish in the 800m run at the 2017 NCAA Indoor Championships with a readout of 2:03.01, making her the highest finishing freshman in the nation in the 800m run. For her efforts throughout the indoor and outdoor seasons, Stauber was named the 2017 SEC Co-Freshman Runner of the Year; she had two runner-up finishes in the 800m run at the SEC Championships during her first year on campus.
During the fall of 2015, Robinson helped freshman Dajour Braxton be named the SEC Freshman of the Year for cross country becoming the first LSU cross country runner in program history to do so. Braxton followed that up with a solid campaign in 2016 garnering NCAA South Central Regional All-Region honors.
Robinson, a Fort Worth, Texas, native, graduated from TCU in 1998 with a degree in social work before earning his master’s degree in public administration at Cal State Los Angeles in 2004.