July 16, 2003
PULLMAN, Wash. -- Ellannee Richardson will join the Washington State University Track & Field coaching staff as a fulltime assistant August 1, replacing current assistant coach Francesca Green, Cougar Head Coach Rick Sloan announced Wednesday.
Green, a former All-American competitor for the Cougars, is leaving her coaching position at WSU to pursue her own career as a long jumper with the 2004 Olympic Games an immediate goal. She will be training with Lissa Olson, a former WSU All-American and assistant coach, now head coach at Purdue.
Richardson is a five-time All-American heptathlete and sprinter from Gladstone, Ore. She is a four-time All-America heptathlete taking second place at the NCAA Championships the past two years. Richardson also earned an All-America certificate at the 2003 NCAA Indoor Championships anchoring the women's 4x400m relay to seventh place with a school-record time of 3 minutes, 35.49 seconds. She currently holds school records in the 400m relay (44.50), 1600m relay and the heptathlon (5,839 points) but during her career also reached school records in the 100m hurdles and the indoor 400m dash. In the WSU all-time records, Richardson's performances are in the top five in eight different events and eighth in the long jump. A three-time Pac-10 heptathlon champion, Richardson was ranked as the third-best heptathlete (top collegiate) in the United States in 2003 by Track & Field News.
In the classroom, Richardson also excelled, graduating from Washington State with a B.A. in sociology in August 2002. She is currently working on her master's degree in criminal justice and political science. She was the recipient of these awards in 2003: WSU's Pac-10 Medal Winner, Cougar Pride Academic Salute Trophy, Senior Excellence in Academics, Pac-10 Postgraduate Scholarship, Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar First Team, NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship, nominee for NCAA Woman of the Year, and Verizon/CoSIDA National Academic All-American second team.
Cougar assistant coach Mark Macdonald will add the men's and women's sprints to his current duties as hurdles coach. Richardson will work with Macdonald in both the sprints and hurdles as well as take on administrative duties of assisting with recruiting, team travel, meet management, and equipment orders.
"I'm saddened with the fact that Francesca will be leaving the program," Sloan said. "She's done an outstanding job with our sprinters for the last three years and has really grown as a coach. I think it will be an adjustment for us with her leaving. However, I wish her well in becoming a fulltime athlete, pursuing the long jump and seeing just how far she can go. I wish her all the best."
"We are excited to have Ellannee still in the program after five years," Sloan continued. "To be able to have her influence and her understanding of the sprints and the hurdles as well as providing technical instruction for those events will be great. Plus, just having someone of her stature and accomplishment around to provide an influence on the athletes on the team will be great."