Dave Milner enters his first year as an assistant coach with the King men’s and women’s cross-country and track & field teams. Milner joins King after one season at East Tennessee State University, during which he coached the middle distance runners and steeplechasers. Every one of the athletes Milner coached at ETSU lowered their PRs and one established a new program record in the women’s steeplechase. He was a key architect in the Buccaneer’s Atlantic Sun Conference team victory in 2012, with all of his athletes playing key point-scoring roles.
Milner brings to the Tornado program almost 30 years of competitive running experience and a dozen years of coaching experience. He got his start in coaching after graduating from the State University of New York at Cortland in 2000, where he majored in Psychology. While at Cortland, he struggled with injuries but was fortunate enough to find himself under the tutelage of legendary coach and physiologist, Dr. Jack Daniels, who Runner's World magazine dubbed the World's Greatest Running Coach.
Upon graduating from Cortland, Dave moved to Seattle where he wound up marathon runners, and then, having caught the coaching bug, accepted another job at Lake Washington High School in Kirkland, Wash. where they were State Champions on the track in 2001.
Milner then moved to Nashville and served as a graduate assistant at Belmont University from 2002 to 2004, helping guide the Bruins to their first two Atlantic Sun conference titles.
He had three very successful years guiding the distance runners at Brentwood High School (Nashville, Tenn.). His boys’ and girls’ teams swept the regional championships each year Milner was at the helm and the boys' team reached their highest finishing position ever at the Tennessee State Cross Country Meet. He was three times voted Nashville Metro Coach of the Year. On the track, Brentwood won two straight state team titles. He coached Sean Keveren, the second fastest prep two-milers in Tennessee history, and a six-time state champion.
Milner returned to Belmont University in 2008 to serve as a full-time assistant coach with the men’s team. In four years at Belmont, the program’s all-time lists at 800m and 1500m were virtually rewritten, with the school records lowered six times by Marcus Bridger-Wilkinson, whom Milner recruited and coached. A proven recruiter he also brought on to Belmont’s campus over three dozen State Champions or runners-up.
Dave is a USA Track & Field-certified coach, has served as the Long Distance Running Chair for USATF-Tennessee and still runs competitively in races ranging in length from one mile to the marathon. He also directs a number of running events, including the Music City Distance Carnival in Nashville, which arguably sees the greatest convergence of distance running talent in the south every year.
Always keen to soak up knowledge from the very best, he recently attended the ADP Super Distance Summit at the U.S Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs, Co., where he learned from legendary coaches Dr. Joe Vigil and Dr. Renato Canova.
Milner also coaches several post-collegiate runners. Most recently, he coached Patrick Cheptoek to clockings of 13:52 and 28:54 for 5K and 10K respectively, and also coached 42-year-old Sonja Friend-Uhl to a world indoor masters record for one-mile at 4:44.81 and then a U.S. masters record at 1500m, clocking 4:16.99.
Milner, who hails from Leeds, England originally, lives in Johnson City with Tracy, and their 1-year-old son, Benjamin.