The Student News Site of Marshfield High School

The Marshfield Times

The Student News Site of Marshfield High School

The Marshfield Times

The Student News Site of Marshfield High School

The Marshfield Times

One Distance Legend

He has gone the distance.
Doug Landrum, coach of two out of the only three athletes to ever win a cross country state title in the history of Marshfield, is retiring from coaching.

Landrum, a special education teacher at Marshfield, started out in the logging business before attending college to begin a teaching career. He has taught for 19 years in the Coos Bay School District at Marshfield and Sunset Middle School.

Landrum coached at Sunset before moving on to Marshfield where he has been coaching cross country for nearly the past decade.

“I started coaching cross country my second year of teaching when I was at Sunset,” Landrum said. “I coached for about eight or nine years at Sunset and then eight or nine years here.”

Landrum has coached six district championship teams, five of which were in the 5A OSAA classification.

“I was really blessed with a great groups of kids who were extremely dedicated and were training year round,” Landrum said. “They were running 12 months a year to be able to achieve those things.”

Junior Cody Harkins has known Landrum since his seventh grade year and has had Landrum as a coach since his freshman year.

“Coach is a really great guy. He’s always in a good mood and always wants to kick some butt no matter what,” Harkins said. “He’s very get-to-it and get your work done.”

As well as being the Far West League and Midwestern League champions, Landrum has also had success at the state level. The boys team has won back-to-back state trophies for the past two seasons.

“The previous year [2013] we were fourth at state and that was the first state trophy that the program had won since the 1960s so that was a big deal, and then this year [2014] we were able to get third,” Landrum said.

Along with team success, Landrum has also coached the two most recent individual state champions: Jared Bassett, a 2008 graduate still at the top or near the top on multiple Marshfield top 10 lists for cross country and track and field, and 2014 graduate Shaylen Crook, Marshfield’s first female cross country state champion.

“Shaylen Crook’s state title and Jared Bassett’s state title were wonderful moments. I was really happy for them because they’re great kids who worked really hard to get there,” Landrum said.

Athletic Director Greg Mulkey has known Landrum since he first entered the Coos Bay School Distict. Mulkey said Landrum is a great coach and he appreciates the passion he has put into coaching over the years.

“Well I just think that his record as a cross country coach speaks for itself. He built a program that is well respected in the state,” Mulkey said. “He was always getting them to a high level, he was always doing everything he possibly could with kids and building relationships so that’s going to be missed greatly because it’s hard to replace a Doug Landrum.”

Former middle school cross country coach Steve Delgado interviewed for the position as head cross country coach on May 27, and Mulkey will be recommending that he be hired.

Alongside Harkins, senior Colby Gillett ran cross country under Landrum’s leadership since the summer before his freshman year. He said Landrum is a great coach because he is funny and cares about his athletes.

“He excels at knowing what he’s doing,” Gillett said. “He does the research and has had several years of experience. He has a great understanding of running and how the muscles work and just knows how to make the season as fun as possible.”

Gillett said he has learned a lot from Landrum.

“I have had a lot of success under Coach Landrum. I definitely would not have made it as far as I have without his coaching,” Gillett said. “He has instilled in me some memories, and I’ll always remember the things he taught us.”

Landrum said coaching has been a positive experience he would not have traded for anything else, and he has no regrets. He said it is time for him to begin a new chapter of his life and for someone else to coach the cross country team.

“I feel that I accomplished the things I set out to accomplish,” Landrum said. “My goal was to bring this program back to being relevant every year within our league and at the state level.”

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One Distance Legend