McKendree Track & Field / Cross Country Camps
Head Coach Michael Mendez
Coach Mendez enters his sixth year at the helm of the cross country and track and field programs for both the men’s and women’s teams. In 2017 he lead the Men’s and Women’s programs to their highest indoor finishes with each team finishing 4th, the women’s team earned a 3rd place finish outdoors, and the men’s team won the GLVC title totaling 150 points and outscoring 2nd by 20 points. He was also voted GLVC Men’s Outdoor Track and Field Coach of the Year.
Over the last five years the program has set and broken over 25 school records, garnered over 100 GLVC All-Conference athletes, 47 of which includes GLVC Champions, earned 39 Midwest All-Region recipients, established 30 NCAA National Qualifiers; 12 of which acquired NCAA All-American Honors (two of the 12 earned second team). Throughout this time, they also accumulated 15 GLVC Athletes of the week and 6 GLVC Athletes of the Year.
Each of the programs have also accumulated many academic accolades. The teams have garnered 10 GLVC All-Academic Team Awards, 183 GLVC Academic All-Conference Individual selections, 5 GLVC Council of Presidents Academic Excellence Award recipients, 18 All-Academic awarded individuals, and 4 All-Academic teams. The Cross Country and Track and Field athletes have also made the Dean’s List (Semester GPA over 3.6) over 140 times and the President’s List (Semester GPA of 4.0) over 50 times.
In the fall of 2012, Mendez set out to establish a premier Division II program as McKendree became full active members of the NCAA in 2013. In five years, the programs have grown to almost 90 athletes targeting both local and out of state recruits.
A native of Plainfield, Illinois, Mendez was an accomplished Track and Cross Country athlete in both high school and as a McKendree athlete. In his four years at McKendree, he helped the Bearcats establish two school records, a 4th-place team finish at the 2007 Track and Field Outdoor NAIA National Championships, 8th-place team finish at the 2009 Cross Country NAIA National Championships, and the conference triple-crown in 2010 (Cross Country, Indoor Track, Outdoor Track). Mendez was a 4-time All-Conference performer in Cross Country, 2-time NAIA Academic All-American, a 5-time NAIA All-American, and 2-time NAIA National Champion.
Mendez currently resides in Lebanon, Illinois and still competes in both running and triathlon events.