· Video: Getting to know Mario Sategna
In his 10th season with the Texas men's track and field program, associate head coach Mario Sategna continues to provide the coaching expertise that has helped keep the Longhorns' program on the national stage.
Since joining the staff at the start of the 2003-04 season Sategna has helped coach five Horns (Marquise Goodwin, Trey Hardee, Donovan Kilmartin, Andra Manson and Maston Wallace) to nine NCAA Championships and 17 student-athletes to 54 All-America honors.
During his tenure, UT has posted ten Top 10 NCAA team finishes, including consecutive third-place finishes indoors in 2007 and '08 (best indoor team finishes in school history). The Horns finished third at the 2006 NCAA Outdoor meet and fourth in 2008. In addition, Sategna has been on staff for five Big 12 Championships.
Sategna, considered one of the top combined and field event coaches in the nation, has also been on the international stage with the Longhorns. He helped Goodwin capture the long jump at the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials and finish 10th at the London Olympics. Goodwin became the first collegian to win both the Olympic Trials and the NCAA Outdoors long jump competition in the same year since 1960. He was also the first-ever Longhorn to reach the long jump final at the Olympics.
Sategna has continued to train Hardee who is one of the elite athletes in the world. Hardee won the silver medal in the decathlon at the 2012 Summer Olympics. He tallied 8,671 points and was in second place from wire-to-wire behind fellow American Ashton Eaton who had 8,869 and was in reach of the Olympic record (8,893 by Roman Sebrle of the Czech Republic in 2004). Eaton and Hardee became the first Americans to go one-two in the Olympic decathlon since Milton Campbell and Rafer Johnson in 1956.
After his athletes captured seven All-America honors and five Big 12 individual championships in the 2012 indoor season, Sategna was named the USTFCCCA National Assistant Coach of the Year as well as the South Central Region Assistant Coach of the Year. His performers posted five first team All-America honors and two second team nods at the NCAA Championships. Senior Jacob Thormaehlen broke the school record in the shot put with a throw of 67-3.25 which was good for second place. The mark was broken earlier in the season by freshman Ryan Crouser (66-7) after it had stood for 30 years. Crouser was later named the Big 12 Freshman Performer of the Year after he became the first Texas thrower to win the shot put at the Big 12 Championships. Sategna's athletes scored 93 points at the league meet with Goodwin (long jump), Wallace (pole vault), Mark Jackson (triple jump) and Petter Olson (heptathlon) winning individual titles in addition to Crouser.
Six athletes under Sategna's tutelage secured All-America honors at the 2012 NCAA Outdoor meet highlighted by the second long jump title for Goodwin who leapt a then career-best 27 feet. Hayden Baillio (shot put - second team), Crouser (discus - first team; shot put - second team), Isaac Murphy (decathlon - second team), Olson (decathlon - second team) and Thormaehlen (shot put - first team) also secured All-America honors.
Sategna has also served as an assistant coach at the international level. In 2011, he was named assistant coach for Team USA at the World Outdoor Championships in Daegu, South Korea. Sategna coached the multi-event athletes and jumpers. He helped Hardee gain a gold medal in the decathlon as he defended his world title. Sategna also had an impact on Goodwin winning the long jump (27-4) at the 2011 USA Outdoor Championships to qualify for the 2011 IAAF World Championships.
The 2011 season was another successful one for Sategna and his student-athletes. He was named the 2011 South Central Region Assistant Coach of the Year after guiding 10 athletes to All-America honors, including five indoors and five outdoors. He received top five finishes outdoors from Goodwin in the long jump (fourth) and Hayden Baillio in the shot put (fourth). During indoors, he coached Goodwin in the long jump (third) and Baillio in the shot put (fifth) to top five performances. Overall, his competitors finished first in their events a total of 21 times in 2011. He coached Goodwin to Big 12 titles both indoors and outdoors. Goodwin set a meet record at outdoors with a jump of 26-9.75.
In 2010, Sategna's expertise in field events was apparent as Goodwin, then a freshman, won the Longhorns' first national title in the outdoor long jump since 1996 with a leap of 26-9. At the time, he moved into second on UT's Top 10 list for the long jump and finished his freshman year third on the indoor list (25-9.25). Goodwin also won the Big 12 outdoor long jump title with a mark of 26-0.75, becoming the first Longhorn to win the conference title in the event since 2001 and the first jumper since 2003 to eclipse the 26-foot mark. In addition, Goodwin collected two All-Big 12 honors and two All-America accolades during the 2010 campaign.
Under Sategna's aid, the Texas throwers also enjoyed unrivaled success during 2010. Three Longhorns - Baillio, Thormaehlen and junior Brandon Drenon - all threw over 60 feet in the indoor shot put to mark the second time in UT history three Horns have posted tosses that long in the same season. In addition, the trio all moved into UT's Top 10 Performer's list. While Drenon redshirted the outdoor season, Baillio and Thormaehlen carried over their success, both qualifying for the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Baillio went on to finish sixth with a then personal-best 61-7.50 to become the first Horn to place in the event since 2006.
Murphy and Kenny Greaves also thrived in combined events with the help of Sategna. Both earned All-Big 12 honors in the heptathlon, while Murphy was all-league in the decathlon and Greaves placed fourth in the outdoor pole vault to become all-conference. On the year, Sategna helped 19 athletes earn All-Big 12 honors (11 indoor, 8 outdoor). Baillio also earned All-America honors in the shot put, helping the Longhorns to a 12th consecutive top-25 finish at the NCAA outdoor meet.
The summer of 2009 provided Sategna with a career first as he mentored Hardee, then in his third year as a professional, to an IAAF World Championship in the decathlon. It marked the first time in Texas men's track and field history that a Longhorn won a World Championship.
Sategna, the 2006 USTFCCCA National Assistant Coach of the Year for men's jumps and combined events was instrumental in the individual careers of Hardee, Kilmartin and Manson. Hardee is the former collegiate record holder in the heptathlon and still holds the decathlon record. Kilmartin is the only three-time NCAA Heptathlon champion and the collegiate record holder in that event prior to Hardee. Manson was a two-time NCAA champion and the school record holder in the indoor high jump.
Hardee's personal-best 8,790 points at the 2009 IAAF World Championships ranked him No. 9 all-time decathlete and the third among Americans at the time. Sategna also helped Hardee win the decathlon at the 2009 U.S. Championships and place second at the 2008 U.S. Olympic Trials to make the Olympic team. In Beijing, Hardee sat in third place after the first day before withdrawing midway through the second day. While at Texas, Hardee set a collegiate heptathlon record, breaking Kilmartin's previous record (6,136 points), with 6,208 points at the 2006 New Mexico Multi-Events Meet. Hardee won the 2005 NCAA Championship in the decathlon with 7,881 points. During the next season, he set the collegiate decathlon record at the 2006 Texas Relays. His 8,465 points topped the 7-year-old record previously held by Tennessee's Tom Pappas. After Hardee broke his hand in December of 2006, which ended his combined events college career, Sategna guided him to an All-America finish in the open long jump (25-8.25) at the 2007 NCAA Indoor Championships. Hardee qualified for nationals with what was the fifth-longest jump (25-9.25) in UT school history (now No. 11).
Sategna also guided Kilmartin to a historic feat. With his third NCAA Indoor Heptathlon Championship in March of 2007, Kilmartin became the only male to win three national heptathlon crowns in NCAA history. He was tabbed the 2007 NCAA Division I Co-Indoor Field Athlete of the Year for his efforts. Overall, Kilmartin earned six All-America honors and won five Big 12 crowns during his career. He also holds the Big 12 Championship record in the heptathlon with 5,870 points. Kilmartin was also a standout in the classroom. He finished his career as the 2008 ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American of the Year to go with three ESPN The Magazine First Team Academic All-America selections.
Under Sategna, Manson ended his four-year career having earned seven All-America honors, including a pair of NCAA titles in 2004. He is tied for first on UT's indoor high jump all-time list (7-7.75) and registered the second-highest outdoor high jump ever for a Longhorn (7-7.25). Manson won two outdoor Big 12 Championships in the high jump (2004, '06) and four indoor league titles. After his collegiate career, Manson, who continued to work with Sategna, became the second Longhorn to earn an Olympic berth in the high jump. He tied for second at the 2008 U.S. Olympic Trials after clearing 7-5.25. In Beijing, Manson cleared 7-4.50, finishing 13th in the qualifying round. Manson went on to tie for second at the 2009 U.S. Championships (7-5.75) and was the top American finisher, placing ninth, at the 2009 World Championships.
Showing his coaching expertise in the throws, Sategna worked with All-American Brian Robison and two-time NCAA Midwest Region Champion Derek Randall. Sategna was named the 2006 USTFCCCA Midwest Region Assistant Coach of the Year for men's throws after the duo's performances that year.
After working his way toward a Big 12 outdoor shot put title in 2005, Robison placed sixth in the shot put at the 2006 NCAA Indoor Championships before sweeping the shot put (with a school-record toss of 68-3.25) and discus (195-10) at the 2006 Big 12 Outdoor Championships. Robison became a two-time All-American by taking second in the shot put at the 2006 NCAA Outdoor Championships with a toss of 66-5.25.
Randall also thrived with Sategna, becoming only the fourth Longhorn to throw 200 feet in the discus. Randall won back-to-back NCAA Midwest Region discus crowns from 2006-07 to automatically qualify for nationals. He became Texas' first discus All-American since Doug Lowell in 1986.
In the long and triple jumps, Sategna's athletes have landed on Texas' Top 10 list. Goodwin owns the top four indoor long jumps and four of the top seven on the all-time outdoor list. All-Americans Joseph Davis and All-Big 12 standout Elliot O'Hare also sit on UT's all-time list. Davis is ninth on UT's all-time outdoor performer's list (52-0.5) and O'Hare is tied for ninth on the indoor chart (50-8.25). Graduate transfer Samyr Laine saw marked improvement under Sategna in 2007, recording the nation's second-longest jump and finishing ranked No. 6 on the UT all-time performer's list (53-6.25).
The 2009 regular season was also highly successful season for Sategna as he helped the Longhorns to a fourth-straight Big 12 Indoor Championship and a seventh consecutive top-seven NCAA Indoor finish. The Longhorns finished in the top 20 in both the indoor and outdoor seasons. Raymond Harris added to Sategna's list of successes as he finished third in the high jump at the NCAA Indoor meet for the second All-America honor of his career. Harris also won the Big 12 Indoor title in the high jump. Sategna's athletes contributed six all-conference honors and 30 points to the Longhorns' overall effort en route to another league title. In the outdoor season, Sategna coached Harris and 2008 national champion Wallace to second-place finishes at the Big 12 Championships. Eight of Sategna's Longhorns were awarded All-Big 12 honors and contributed 34.5 points to a third-place team finish.
The 2008 season was particularly memorable for Sategna, as he helped Wallace, then a freshman, to a victory in the pole vault at the NCAA Outdoor Championships and mentored Manson and Hardee to berths on the United States squad for the 2008 Beijing Olympics. During the spring, Wallace had already earned All-America honors after finishing third at the NCAA Indoor meet. Sategna also helped Harris, then a junior, garner the first All-America honor of his career in the high jump. In addition, Sategna's athletes earned 13 All-Big 12 honors, including Kilmartin's league title in the decathlon, while helping to secure UT's third consecutive Big 12 Indoor Championship.
During the 2007 indoor season, Sategna guided Manson, Hardee and Kilmartin to All-America honors as the trio contributed to UT's highest NCAA indoor team finish in program history (third place). En route, Sategna worked with Texas on its second consecutive Big 12 Championship in mentoring eight point scorers and All-Big 12 team members. Manson brought home his fourth straight indoor title and tied the school record (7-7.75) with his performance at the 2007 Tyson Invitational.
The success continued during the outdoor season as Sategna helped six student-athletes qualify for the outdoor national championships including four first-time qualifiers. Randall earned an automatic spot after winning the discus while Manson placed in the top five high jumpers at the 2007 NCAA Midwest Region Championship. Davis and Laine earned at-large bids in the triple jump. Sategna continued UT's representation in the combined events at the national meet with first-time qualifiers, freshmen Andrew Webb and Shawn Schmidt.
In addition to Hardee setting a new NCAA heptathlon record at the 2006 New Mexico Multi-Events Meet (6,208 points) and Kilmartin captured the NCAA heptathlon title (6,048), Hardee added a seventh-place showing in the long jump (25-5.25) at the NCAA meet, while Ronald Hill placed eighth (25-0).
The 2005 season was a fruitful one for Sategna as Hardee captured the decathlon at the NCAA Championships with 7,881 points. Kilmartin added a fourth-place All-America finish. Kilmartin and Hardee also earned All-America honors in the heptathlon in the spring, placing second and third, respectively. Manson added a third-place finish in the high jump at the NCAA Indoor meet after winning the Big 12 indoor title for a second consecutive season with a leap of 7-5. Also at the Big 12 Indoor Championships, Kilmartin topped the 7-year-old conference heptathlon record when he tallied 5,791 points. Kilmartin also took 11th in the decathlon at the U.S. Championships that year.
Sategna's athletes were equally productive at the Big 12 Outdoor Championships, as Robison became the first Texas track/football athlete since Eric Metcalf in 1987 to win a conference title, claiming the shot put with a personal best toss of 64-7.75. Robison also became the first track/football athlete to win a Big 12 championship in the nine-year history of the conference. Robison added a 13th-place finish at the U.S. Championships with a toss of 63-2.
In his first year with the Longhorns, Sategna produced two NCAA indoor champions (Manson and Kilmartin), one NCAA outdoor champion (Manson) and two Big 12 champions (Manson and Tom Engwall, javelin), while four of his athletes qualified for the Olympic trials. Manson cleared a personal best 7-7.25 in the high jump at the NCAA Championships in 2004, a jump that ranked Manson number 10 in the world. Kilmartin reached number six in the world after his performance at the 2004 NCAA Indoor Championships with a score of 6,136, a then collegiate record.
Sategna came to Texas from the University of Minnesota where he was the men's assistant coach for four years (1999-02). In that position, he was in charge of the Gophers' throws, multi-events, pole vault and high hurdler events. He coached student-athletes to four Big Ten individual crowns, two All-America honors and eight school records. Sategna also helped guide Minnesota to the Big Ten Conference Outdoor title, a first-place finish in the USTCA Indoor Team Power Rankings and Top 10 showings at the NCAA Indoor and Outdoor Championships during the 2003 campaign.
Before his tenure at Minnesota, Sategna served as an assistant coach in charge of throws at Wichita State from 1998-99. Prior to his stint with the Shockers, Sategna was a physical education teacher and track and field coach at Albuquerque (N.M.) Academy in 1997-98 and a volunteer assistant track and field coach at LSU in 1996-97.
A standout decathlete, Sategna was a three-time All-American at LSU in the 1990s. He won the 1994 Southeastern Conference title and the 1995 NCAA crown in the decathlon, and his personal-best point total of 8,172 still stands as the LSU record and ranks among the NCAA top 10 all-time point totals. He also finished sixth in the World University Games, was a 1996 United States Olympic Trials qualifier and won the 1997 U.S. versus Germany Decathlon Dual meet (8,107).
A native of Bloomfield, N.M., Sategna earned a bachelor of science degree in kinesiology from LSU in 1996 and a master of education degree in applied kinesiology from Minnesota in 2002. Sategna is USATF Level II certified in sprints, hurdles, throws and multi-events.
Mario and his wife, Dahlia, reside in Austin with their three children.