GREENSBORO, NC (theACC.com) – The Atlantic Coast Conference on Thursday recognized the individual winners for the 2022 outdoor track and field season.
Florida State leads all schools with three winners, as voted by league head coaches, followed by two from Virginia. Louisville, Miami, NC State and Virginia Tech each recognized a student-athlete or coach.
The list of conference winners includes four NCAA champions, five ACC champions and seven All-ACC first-team winners.
MAN TRACK PERFORMER OF THE YEAR
Trey Cunningham, State of Florida
FEMALE TRACK PERFORMER OF THE YEAR
Katelyn Tuohy, State of North Carolina
MALE FIELD PERFORMER OF THE YEAR
Claudio Romero, Virginia
FEMALE FIELD PERFORMER OF THE YEAR
Gabriela Leon, Louisville
CO-FRESHMEN MEN OF THE YEAR
Sean Watkins Jr., Florida State
Kahleje Tillmon, Virginia Tech
FIRST WOMAN OF THE YEAR
Mia Barnett, Virginia
MAN COACH OF THE YEAR
Bob Braman, State of Florida
FEMALE COACH OF THE YEAR
Florida State’s Cunningham has won all 10 of his 110 men’s hurdle races this outdoor season. He posted a time of 13.22 or better in nine of those events, becoming the first athlete in NCAA history to do so. The Winfield, Alabama graduate tied the second-fastest time in NCAA history (13.00) at the NCAA Outdoor Championships en route to a national title. The 1:00 p.m. time also tied the ACC record first set in 1979 by Renaldo Nehemiah of Maryland.
In addition to Thursday’s accolade, Cunningham is a Bowerman semifinalist. He was named National Male Outdoor Athlete of the Year by Track and Field News and Southern Region Male Track Athlete of the Year by the USTFCCCA.
NC State’s Tuohy won his first NCAA individual crown in 2022, winning the 5,000m title with a time of 15:18.39. Tuohy also won the ACC title in the 1,500m and was the ACC runner-up in the 5,000m. The Stony Point, New York native has posted three PR events this season that also set school records and rank in the college top 10 all-time. His time of 4:06.84 in the 1,500 meters ranks seventh, while his time of 15:14.61 in the 5,000 meters ranks eighth and is also the ACC record.
Tuohy was part of the Wolfpack 4x1500m relay team that posted the second-fastest time in collegiate history (16:55.19). She did not place less than second in any race in her outdoor season.
Virginia’s Romero, a native of Santiago, Chile, capped an undefeated season and won the discus title at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships with a throw of 66.17 yards (217-1). It was one of his five throws this season that traveled over 65 yards. Romero hit his PR of 67.02 meters (219-11) to win the event at the prestigious Penn Relays.
Leon de Louisville, a native of Grand Rapids, Mich., won the women’s pole vault gold medal at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships with a clearance of 4.60 meters (15-1), this which was only the second 15-foot-or-better winning mark in meet history. Earlier this season, Leon topped 4.61m (15-1.5) at the Clark Wood Invitational and became just the fourth jumper in college history to climb 4.60m (15-1) or more three times in one season.
Both Romero and Leon have been named the 2022 Southeast Region Outfield Athletes of the Year by the USTFCCCA.
Watkins, of Florida State, won bronze in the 400 meters at the ACC Championships in 45.74, a 1.5 second improvement from his time in the event at the start of the season . The freshman from Opa Locka, Fla. also ran a leg on the Seminoles 4x400m relay team that won silver at the ACC Finals with a time of 3:05 .83 and ranked 16th in the NCAA.
After walking last fall and earning a full scholarship this spring, Virginia Tech’s Tillmon was the ACC champion in the 200 meters, breaking the Hokies’ 10-year school record with a time of 20.41. The Tucker, Georgia native also ran the opening leg of the Virginia Tech 4x100m relay all season, helping the Hokies win their first ACC title in the event in school history (38.69). and second-team All-America NCAA honors (38.99).
Barnett of Virginia earned second-team all-conference honors with a fourth-place finish of 4:12.23 in the 1,500 meters at this year’s ACC Championships. La Crescenta, California’s regular season time of 4:11.32 on April 23 was then the sixth fastest in NCAA history. Barnett posted the fastest 800-meter and 1,500-meter times by a freshman in Virginia history, and his 1,500-meter time ranks second overall. She also helped the Cavaliers to a fourth-place finish in the DMR at the Penn Relays with a strong anchor leg that pushed UVA three spots from the No. 7 position.
Braman’s Men’s Outdoor Track and Field Coach of the Year honor is his 28th overall ACC coaching honor in track and field (indoor and outdoor) and cross country with FSU. The Seminole men won their 14th tag team championship, including 12 under Braman’s management.
FSU’s 149 points and 56-point margin of victory are the highest by an ACC men’s champion since the conference expanded to its current 15 teams. The Seminoles held a four-point lead heading into the final day of competition, then pulled away to win big.
FSU then led all ACC teams to the NCAA Finals with a team-high fourth place finish, their highest at the outdoor track and field championships since 2012.
Deem of Miami led the Hurricanes to their four ACC Women’s Outdoor Track and Field Championships. Miami’s most recent conference title before this season came in 2018 as the host team at Coral Gables.
The Hurricanes led this year’s championship standings with 108 points, 6.5 ahead of second-placed Duke. The Miami Women came into this year’s game Saturday mid-pack in the team standings, but consistent performance across the board pushed the Hurricanes to the top by the end of the game.
This year marks the fourth time Deem has been recognized as the ACC Women’s Outdoor Track and Field Coach of the Year, and this is her eighth overall ACC coaching honor.