Coach Jim Hurt Welcomes John McCree To Staff As Throws Coach|
Sept. 15, 2014
QUEENS, N.Y. - St. John's head women's track & field and cross country coach Jim Hurt has announced the addition of long-time New York coaching great and former program standout John McCree to this staff as the new throws coach for the Red Storm.
"We are very pleased to have John McCree return to his alma mater to coach our throwers," said Hurt. "John was an outstanding thrower here at St. John's and has had incredible success in his long coaching career at the collegiate and high school levels. St. John's throws have had a long and exceptional history producing Olympians, World and U.S. record holders, and numerous national champions, and John will continue to extend that tradition into the future. I am exceptionally pleased that we have kept our throwing coach in the St. John's family and am excited to see what John and our throwers will accomplish this year and in the years to come."
McCree, a Newark, N.J., native, brings more than 38 years of coaching experience from both the collegiate and high school levels, including stints at Manhattan College, Queens College, New York Institute of Technology, St. Francis Prep and St. Anthony's High School. He holds the rare coaching distinction of having worked with throwers that achieved All-America status in NCAA Division I, II and III as well as in high school, all in the hammer throw.
McCree's high school coaching career produced seven national champions, including four in the weight throw, two in the hammer and one in the shot put. He also coached a Junior Pan Am champion in Brazil and a Junior World Champion in Poland, as well as a two-time Track & Field News "Athlete of the Year." McCree's athletes have set a number of US national class records in the weight and hammer throws, along with a NY state record in the boys shot put at 68' 11.25". During an 18-year stretch, McCree had athletes qualify for the high school national championships each and every year. In 2013, an unprecedented seven of his athletes qualified for the national championships in the same event, the weight throw. A mark of his long-lasting success and coaching longevity, one of McCree's athletes broke the New York State mark in the high school hammer throw in 1979, and, in 2007, another one of his throwers broke it again.
As a student-athlete at St. John's, McCree set school records in the hammer and weight throws, becoming the first in program history to break the 200' and 60' barriers, respectively. He was nationally ranked and qualified for the Division I NCAA Championships all four of his years in Queens, winning a pair of Metropolitan Championships and Kansas Relays titles while also medaling at the Florida Relays, Penn Relays, Olympic Invitational and the prestigious Millrose Games. Upon graduation from St. John's he was the recipient of three major University honors, including the Ernest Haberle Award for top track & field performer, the Dr. Peter Vitulli Award for the student-athlete that overcomes the most hardships, and the Lt. Frank Haggerty Award for the outstanding student-athlete at St. John's University.
As a competitor in the hammer throw, shot put and discus at Essex Catholic High School in Newark, N.J., McCree was schooled in the throwing events by legendary coach Tony Naclerio, the 1996 U.S. Olympic throws coach. Under Naclerio, he broke the N.J. state record in the hammer, won the parochial N.J. state championship in the discus and was a member of the four-man shot put relay that set and still holds the national record of 231'8".
McCree, who graduated from St. John's in 1975 with a bachelor degree in Criminal Justice, worked as a Federal Agent for over 21 years as a U.S. Postal Inspector. He retired from government work in 2008.
McCree has been elected into the Essex Catholic Hall of Fame and the Bloomfield, N.J. Hall of Fame.
He currently resides in Seaford, N.Y., with his wife Mary.