In a triumphant display of excellence at the 2024 CIAA Indoor Track & Field Championships at the JDL Fast Track, Fayetteville State University's Inez Turner and Claflin University's Melvin Watts emerged as the CIAA Women's Coach of the Year and Men's Coach of the Year, respectively.

The coaches led their teams to repeat victories, with Fayetteville State's women and Claflin's men securing another championship title.

Turner, the iconic Jamaican Olympian and head coach of Fayetteville State University's Women's Track and Field team, expressed her gratitude on Facebook for winning yet another championship. She shared, "It is so very awesome to know that one's labor is not in vain. I am happy that through it all, the victory is won. This marks our 14th championship since my assignment at Fayetteville State University back in the fall of 2017. I am indeed grateful and thankful to our Lord and Savior who has ordained His abundant blessings."

The Fayetteville State University Women's team, also known as the Lady Broncos, clinched their fourth championship in five seasons, tallying 138 points.

Their exceptional performances were highlighted by M'Smyra Seward, named Women's Field Athlete of the Year, who triumphed in the long jump event with a distance of 5.89 meters. Irene Jeptoo and Nia Gibson secured victories in the 1-mile and 3,000 meters, respectively, contributing significantly to the team's success. Winston-Salem State's Hayleigh Bryant earned Women's Track Athlete of the Year honors after winning the 400 meters and the 200 meters.

On the men's side, Claflin University maintained their dominance, securing their second consecutive championship with 131 points. Key contributors included Jonathan Flemister, who won the 200-meter dash, and Chander Anderson, claiming victory in the 400 meters. Zion Murry repeated as the 800-meter champion. Saint Augustine’s Terrell Robinson was named Men's Track Athlete of the Year, showcasing his prowess in the 60-meter event.

The championship victories solidify Turner and Watts' reputations as exceptional coaches, guiding their teams to sustained success. The achievements of the athletes and coaches reflect the dedication, perseverance, and championship mindset that define the spirit of these track and field programs.



Fayetteville State's revered Head Cross Country and Track & Field Coach, Inez Turner, is set to embrace additional responsibilities within the Broncos' Department of Athletics. A 21-time Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) Coach of the Year, Turner is now appointed as the women's sports administrator overseeing the Broncos' seven female programs.

In this new role, Turner will provide vital oversight, acting as a liaison between the programs and the Director of Athletics. Her responsibilities extend to offering championship-caliber guidance to foster excellence across the board.

"Inez Turner has done a tremendous job with her programs since the day I hired her," stated Director of Athletics Anthony Bennett. "It only makes sense to put her in a position where she can mentor our coaches and provide resources so all programs will be championship contenders and one day national contenders."

Turner's role will encompass motivational advising, scheduling, academic monitoring, professional development, and the cultivation of a winning atmosphere for each women's program.

  Expressing gratitude for the recognition of her value, Coach Turner remarked, "I am grateful that Fayetteville State and the athletics director, Mr. Bennett, recognize my value and provide me with additional opportunities to become a better version of myself. This role will undoubtedly allow me to invest everything I have towards the advancement of our young lives, coaches, and all our programs."


Since joining Fayetteville State in 2017, Turner has led the Broncos to an unprecedented 13 CIAA Championship titles, marking the most in FSU's athletic history by a single coach. Notable achievements include six consecutive crowns for the women's cross-country program, back-to-back titles for the men, and recent successes for the women's indoor and outdoor programs.

Reflecting on her winning record, Turner shared, "Being a winner brings me enormous joy. I become enthusiastic when striving to be the greatest, and I am ready to multiply the blessings. Being a successful force in the sporting world is an adventure that can help guide and lead others to greater heights."

In a coaching career spanning since 2004, Turner has left an indelible mark, with previous coaching roles at the New York Track Club and North Carolina A&T State University. Before her tenure at FSU, she served as the head coach at Winston-Salem State University for eight years, securing nine conference titles.

Turner, a 1998 graduate of Texas State University, represented her native Jamaica in the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta, GA. Her impressive athletic career includes medals from the '94 Commonwealth Games, the '97 World Championships, and the Caribbean Free Trade Association Games. Turner has been honored as a five-time Penn Relays Wall of Famer, a National Junior College Hall of Famer, and a Hall of Famer at Texas State.

With her new role as women's sports administrator, Inez Turner is poised to extend her influence and dedication to further elevate the success of Fayetteville State's female sports programs.






Jamaican Olympian Inez Turner, the head coach at Fayetteville State University in North Carolina, was named Women's Atlantic Region Coach of the Year by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross-Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA).

Turner, who represented Jamaica at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia, led the Fayetteville State Broncos to their second consecutive Women's CIAA Indoor Track and Field Championship title in the program's three years of existence.

The Broncos captured the podium 32 points ahead of their competition with 155 points in the eight-team championship. Winston-Salem State was the runner-up (132) while Virginia State (66) was third.

The former middle-distance runner was honoured but praised the people who have supported her.

"It is the blood that keeps giving me strength from day to day; it will never lose its power. It flows to the highest mountains and reaches the lowest valleys. When rewarded with an award like this, it comes with support, first from God who bestowed his blessings, sealed and handed me an envelope that must pass through a process.  A process that includes the toughest, resiliency, hard work and dedication," she said on Facebook.

"It is worthy to pay dues that one day will find a way to float back to you unprecedented. To everyone including my student-athletes, my coaches, my AD, Dr Miller, Norwood, King, Ferguson, the whole athletic department, and our Chancellor of Fayetteville State University please know that I do this not by myself. "

At the championships, FSU’s Mya Jackson received Most Valuable Women's Track Athlete after winning the 60-meter hurdles and the 200m while Jade Jordan won the triple and long jumps for the Women's MVP for field events.

Turner has made a huge impact by bringing the Fayetteville State track program back to life since taking over the role of Head Coach in 2017.

In addition to the recent indoor titles, Coach Turner has led the Broncos to three consecutive CIAA Women's Cross-Country Championships in her first three seasons at the helm. The indoor program finished third in the conference in 2017 and the outdoor track and field program was runner-up in the same year.

Coach Turner received the USTFCCCA DII Indoor Atlantic Region Coach of Year Award in 2020.


© 2023 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.