Rahmiller honored by IHSTCA

Published on November 14, 2013 in the Charles City Press

When the boys on the Charles City cross country team heard that coach Ryan Rahmiller had been nominated for Class 3A's Coach of the Year by the Iowa High School Track Coaches Association, the first words out of their mouths were, "Really? It's about time."

Rahmiller has been the boys cross country coach for nine years. In that span he has taken six teams to the state meet and they have placed third three times, including a third place finish in 2012.

Coaches from around the state are starting to take notice.

"It is just a nice honor to be recognized by your coaching peers around the state," Rahmiller said. "We are lucky to have a great group of kids to work with every single day."

Dennis Evelsizer from Decorah was named the Coach of the Year in Class 3A, but Rahmiller was one of six coaches nominated for the award.

All six coaches that were nominated were down at the state meet, so to some degree the award reflects just how good of a season the boys had as a team this year. Rahmiller doesn't think he deserves much credit for that.

"This is a group that came to me already prepared and ready to go," Rahmiller said. "The season is really made in the summer time and they come with a lot of the base running that we ask them to do."

The runners on the boys team have a little higher opinion about the impact Rahmiller has on the team however.

"He is hands down the best coach that I have had, and probably the best coach that I will ever have," said junior Jacob Day. "With him it is not just about the kids that are the best, it is about everybody. He shows just as much attention to the first kid on the team as the last kid on the team. He cares about absolutly everybody and everything that is going on with all of them."

The number of runners he has to work with has grown rapidly in his nine years as the coach. The boys team has more than tripled in size from his first year in 2004, with record numbers this season.

"When he first started there was less than 20 people out, and now there are 48," said senior Alec Jensen. "I don't know if there is another man in the community who could turn this cross country thing into a big deal, and still keep it a family oriented team."

Once again, Rahmiller was quick to share the credit for the growth in the program.

"Coach (Bruce) Eldridge is a big part of that too," Rahmiller said. "He and I have a lot of the same coaching philosophy. Coach (Erik) Hoefer, the middle school coach, gets them interested at that level. He has a very welcoming and enthusiastic personality."

The Comets coaching staff can share credit for getting more kids to come out — the girls had a record number of runners out this year as well. For the boys team specifically, it is Rahmiller that keeps them coming back year after year and mile after mile.

"He makes practice fun," said junior Will Jarvill. "I enjoy going to practice and I enjoy running. He just makes it a great environment for everybody to strive and succeed."

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