JEFFERSON CITY—The Carson-Newman Eagles Cross Country team has named former student-athlete Luke Greer as the program's acting coach for the 2019-2020 season.

Greer returns to Mossy Creek to coach the team he lifted to great heights during his running career. The United Kingdom native received invitations to the Division II National Championships in 2017 and 2018. After finishing in 8th place in the National Championships in his senior season, Greer became the first Eagle to earn All-American honors since Carson-Newman moved to Division II in 1994.

"[Former Head Coach] Eric Phillips left to be closer to home at Saginaw Valley State University. We were pleased with how he coached the program and since his departure have been looking for someone with a unique understanding and that was Luke Greer," said Director of Track and Cross Country David Needs. He's the most decorated runner we've ever had and he holds just about every school record.

"To have someone like Luke who has invested and developed as a runner to come back and share those same things that made him great with the athletes we have now is not something every coach can utilize and we're excited about that."

In addition to his stellar career as a student-athlete, Greer also has some previous coaching experience under his belt. He coached youth soccer during his collegiate running career, where he stressed making a difference in people's lives.

"My main motivation for being a coach is helping other athletes grow the way I did and helping them understand the fact that there is someone there for you who wants you to improve just as much as you want yourself to improve," Greer said.

The first-year coach will be matched with a particularly young team, especially on the men's side which consists solely of newcomers with the exception of senior Rafael Adame.

"As a coach, I'm going to do my best to make it fun... but what I want to instill in them is that you've got to follow the process and you will see the benefits and you will reap the rewards in the long-term," Greer said.

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