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Perkins takes helm

Jeff Perkins took over as UC Irvine track and field and cross country coach on Jan. 1.

Perkins, who joined the UCI staff in 2007, served the past four years as associate head coach for Vince O'Boyle, who retired Dec. 31 after 32 seasons with the 'Eaters.

"I would like to thank [Athletic Director] Mike Izzi and his administration for believing in me to take over this program, and giving me the opportunity to replace a legend here at UCI in Vince O'Boyle," Perkins said.

"I am looking forward to the many challenges that a head coach has to face and continuing to build on an already stellar reputation that Coach O'Boyle has set forth in the 32 years that he has led this program.

"I would like to thank Vince O'Boyle for his dedication to not only myself, but to the staff and student-athletes he has developed over the years, and the constant mentorship and guidance that he has shown me over my time here as an assistant coach at UCI," Perkins said.

Perkins works primarily with the sprinters, hurdlers and jumpers. In six years at UCI, he has been responsible for 10 Big West Conference champions, 18 NCAA qualifiers, one NCAA champion and four school record holders.

Perkins coached Charles Jock, who won the 800 meters at the 2012 NCAA Track & Field Championships, becoming UCI's first individual NCAA champion in 34 years. In 2010, Jock broke the legendary Steve Scott's school record in the 800 that had stood for 32 years. Jock was runner-up at the 2011 NCAA Championships and competed for the USA National Team at the 2011 World Championships in Daegu, South Korea.

Another Perkins protégé, Ericka Nowell, is a redshirt senior for the Anteaters this season and won Big West titles in the 400 hurdles in 2011 and 2012.

Perkins has coached both Danny McFarlane and Josef Robertson from Jamaica in the 400-meter hurdles. McFarlane won the 400 hurdles at the 2008 Jamaica Olympic Trials to advance to the Beijing Olympics. He was a silver medalist at the 2004 Olympic Games and placed fifth at the 2007 World Championships in Osaka, Japan, and sixth at the 2009 World Championships in Berlin, Germany. Robertson was a 2009 World Championship qualifier and semi-finalist in the 2011 World Championships in Daegu, South Korea.

Perkins joined the Anteaters' staff from the University of Oklahoma, where he served two years as an assistant coach for the men's program, coaching the sprints, hurdles and relays.

While at Oklahoma, Perkins coached 12 NCAA-regional qualifiers and six NCAA qualifiers.

Perkins served from 2002-05 in the Big West Conference at Cal State Northridge, where he coached the men's and women's sprints, hurdles and jumps.

In 2003-04, the Matadors won the men's and women's Big West titles as four of Perkins' student-athletes won individual conference titles. He coached eight individual and three relay NCAA-regional qualifiers, with two of his athletes advancing to the NCAA Championships.

He coached the 2005 Big West Freshman Female Track Athlete of the Year and the Northridge men's team won the conference team title. In his three years with the Matador staff, Perkins coached a total of 12 conference champions, 19 NCAA-regional qualifiers and six NCAA qualifiers.

Perkins began his career at the University of Tennessee, where he was a manager and volunteer coach.

Perkins' staff at UCI includes Katelyn Ciarelli, Chris Evans, Owen McGregor, Marques Barosso and Greg Charles.

"Katelyn has done a tremendous job of developing our throwers to the top of the Big West Conference and with her relentless attention to detail and dedication, I am looking forward to the continued success of that area," Perkins said.

"Chris Evans will take over the distance program and will have big shoes to fill after the retirement of Vince O'Boyle. Chris brings a focus and enthusiasm that is contagious and with being an alum of the program, he understands UCI very well, both inside and out," Perkins said.

"Owen has a multitude of experience at the Division I level as both an athlete and head coach. He brings a lot to the table to provide the student-athletes with knowledge of what it takes to succeed both academically and athletically."

"Marques brings a keen understanding of the sprint events and relays as he has been a conference champion while at Cal State Fullerton and an elite sprinter on the European Circuit. He will help to teach our student-athletes the specific techniques to better themselves on the track."

"Greg has been with us for over 10 years now and has done a tremendous job of continuing to develop and mentor our pole vaulters," Perkins said

— From staff reports

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