2008 Conference USA Indoor Coach of the Year
2008 Conference USA Outdoor Coach of the Year
2007 NCAA South Central Regional Cross Country Coach of the Year
2007 Conference USA Cross Country Coach of the Year
2007 Conference USA Outdoor Coach of the Year
2007 Conference USA Indoor Coach of the Year
2005 Conference USA Cross Country Coach of the Year
2002 Western Athletic Conference Cross Country Coach of the Year
1999 Western Athletic Conference Cross Country Coach of the Year
1994 Southwest Conference Cross Country Coach of the Year
Veteran cross country and track and field coach Jim Bevan is in his 26th year with the Rice women's track and field program and is in his seventh season as head coach of the Rice Owls.
Since Rice became a member of Conference USA and under Bevan's tutelage, the Owls have been one of the league's annual contenders for the team trophy and have captured team titles in cross country (2005, 2007), indoor (2007, 2008), outdoor (2007, 2008).
The Rice Owls were one of only two teams in the nation in 2008 to win the triple crown by winning conference titles in cross country, indoor track and field, and outdoor track and field. He also coached U.S. Olympic long jumper Funmi Jimoh in the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Bevan, 49, was awarded his first South Central Regional Coach of the Year Award in cross country when the Owls made history in the fall of 2007 by winning the program's first ever NCAA South Central Regional championship to earn an automatic bid to the NCAA Championship. He also earned C-USA Coach for the Year Award when the Owls won the 2007 conference title. It was Bevan's fifth conference cross country coaching honor and his second in C-USA. Previously, the Southwest Conference honored Bevan after the Owls' 1994 championship and by the Western Athletic Conference following Rice's team titles in 1999 and 2002. He won his first C-USA award when his cross country team captured the school's first title in its new conference in the fall of 2005.
Bevan earned the C-USA Student-Athlete Advisory Committee Coaches Choice Award for cross country in 2007. The award recognizes the coach most committed to fostering student-athlete development and welfare through a positive athletic and academic atmosphere. Bevan's insistence on the importance of academics is epitomized by his perfect graduation rate amongst Rice student-athletes with whom he has worked. Two of Bevan's athletes, Marissa Daniels for cross country and Callie Wells for track and field, earned 2006-07 C-USA Scholar Athlete of the Year Awards as the top student athletes in their sports.
Bevan's cross country runners have also prospered during the track season. Julie Jiskra placed fourth in the 10,000 meters at the 1991 NCAA outdoor meet, Nicole Aleskowitch finished fourth in the 3000 meters at the 1994 NCAA outdoor meet, and Canadian Candace Lessmeister was an eight-time SWC middle-distance champion and the runner-up in the mile at the national indoor meet in 1994. Stacy Swank garnered All-America honors in the 3,000 in 1995, while Shaquandra Roberson earned All-America honors in 2000 following her fourth-place finishes at the NCAA outdoor championships in the 800- and 1500-meters, the only runner in the nation to double as an all-American that year. Most recently, Daniels earned All American honors in the 10,000 meters in 2007.
Under Bevan, Rice has been a consistent force in the distance medley relay. In 1999, the distance medley relay team, comprised of Kari Vigerstol, Margaret Fox, Aimee Teteris and Erin Brand, won the USA Track and Field Championships and finished sixth at the NCAA championships. The 2000 DMR crew of Vigerstol, Teteris, Allison Beckford, and Roberson, set the Rice record of 11:15.70 with a sixth-place finish at the NCAA indoor championships.
But the distance success is only one part of the story of the Owls success that has seen the team sweep the 2007 conference track titles and earns Bevan a sweep of the Coach of the Year accolades.
Bevan has nurtured the careers of numerous All-America athletes in the jumping events. Most recently, Funmi Jimoh fought hard and overcame injury to take fifth in the long jump at the 2007 NCAA Outdoor Championships.
Claudia Haywood won five SWC championships, earned four all-America honors and captured both the NCAA and USA outdoor triple jump titles in 1993. Jumpers Sonya Henry, Diane Somerville, Yvette Haynes and, Alice Falaiye have all earned All-America honors under his direction. Falaiye later competed in the 2001 world championships and went on to win the long jump gold medal in the 2003 Pan American Games.
In all, Bevan has coached 18 runners and jumpers to 31 All-America honors.
Bevan also has worked with some post-collegians in their efforts to represent their country in international competitions. He coached Diana Orrange, who represented the United States at the 1995 World Championships and 1996 Olympics; two-time Olympian Flora Hyacinth in both the long jump and triple jump; and he guided former Rice standout Alice Falaiye, representing Canada, to the gold in the long jump at the 2003 Pan American Games.
Before joining the Rice staff in 1986, he was an assistant men's track and cross country coach for three years at Adams State College in Alamosa, Colo. Bevan was an assistant to Dr. Joe I. Vigil, the U.S. distance coach for the 1988 and 2008 Olympics, the 1991 U.S. Pan American team head coach and a seven-time U.S. Cross Country coach.
While Bevan was at Adams State, they won three consecutive NAIA cross country titles and set an NAIA scoring record at the national meet. The school has won more cross country national championships than any other school in the country (30). Bevan graduated from Adams State in 1984 with a bachelor's degree in history and physical education. In the summer of 1986, he earned his master's degree in health, physical education and recreation from Adams State as well. Bevan is a USATF certified Level I and Level II coach.