‘To Not Give 100 Percent Is to Waste [Your] Gift’
The College of Southern Maryland (CSM) has hired Ken Killion of Fort Washington as the college’s new cross country coach.
“We are pleased to add Coach Killion to our coaching staff as he brings a wealth of experience and a rich cross country history to our college and program,” said CSM Executive Director of Student Life and Athletics Michelle Ruble.
CSM’s cross country programs were introduced only a few years ago, with the women’s team established in 2013 and the men’s in 2014. Killion comes to CSM with experience in building new programs.
A 1973 graduate of Bucks County Community College with an associate degree in health and physical education, Killion also is a graduate of East Stroudsburg State College with a bachelor of science degree in health and physical education and a master’s degree in education with a concentration in health and physical education.
While in graduate school, Killion established East Stroudsburg’s women’s cross country team and served as assistant women’s track coach. During his tenure at East Stroudsburg, his athletes set more than 125 school records, with one athlete achieving All American status and going on to compete in the women’s Olympic marathon trials in 1984. Killion also had a number of athletes place in the highly competitive Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference, including the initial winner in women’s conference history and a seven-time conference champion.
In addition to his work at East Stroudsburg, Killion has also coached at various high schools in the Philadelphia area, where he worked with a number of nationally ranked high school athletes.
“At East Stroudsburg, the main goal was getting students interested in the program,” Killion said. “We had to start as a club and had to have athletes show a consistent interest in the program before it could be accepted as a varsity sport. Once it was accepted as a varsity sport, it became more of doing the recruiting work to get the student who wanted to come to the school for the academics first and the team second.”
Killion’s first goal for CSM’s teams is to have a full complement of runners on both the men’s and women’s team, he said. “We will need a minimum of five for each gender,” he said. The team can build from there for each season after.”
Killion said he is interested in working with any CSM student runner who is motivated. “I will work with anyone who wants to get better. Cross country is an individual sport with the team aspect added — you should always try to become a better runner no matter your ability — these are the type of athletes that I always want to work with. Anyone new to the sport is always welcomed, but they also must understand that it is hard work.
“Dedication carries over to all other aspects of life,” Killion said. “Everyone who comes out for the team has been given an ability to run, and to not give 100 percent is to waste that gift.”
The CSM athletic staff and Josh Trice, the former head coach for CSM cross country, has been assisting Killion in his transition to the position. “I would like to thank Michelle Ruble for giving me this opportunity to bring the cross country program up to a level that the College of Southern Maryland is accustomed to,” Killion said. I would also like to thank the athletic staff and especially the former head coach, Josh Trice, in helping with this transition.”
For information about CSM athletics, visit http://athletics.csmd.edu.