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Carleton hires new Strength and Conditioning Coach

<rleton Athletic Department hired a new team member in 2017: Head Strength and Conditioning Coach Robert Barrett. Upon reviewing sixty applicants, the committee found that Barrett was the best candidate for the job.

According to Athletic Director Gerald Young, the search process consisted of establishing a search committee made up of coaches, Recreational Director Mikki Showers and Associate Director of Athletics and Head Volleyball Coach Heidi Jaynes.

Former strength coach Jim Jarvis was fired last year under vague circumstances.

Barrett hails from Eugene, Oregon where he earned a degree in Exercise Science from Western Oregon University. During college, he participated in shot put and hammer on the track and field team. He then went on to earn an NSCA Strength and Conditioning Specialist Certificate and his master’s in Exercise Physiology.

Barrett has coached at a multitude of schools ranging from the Division I to the Division III level. He started working in Michigan and then moved back to Oregon to help assist the Raccoons at Southwestern Oregon Community College. He then interned at Oregon State University before moving out East to help become part of the athletic program at Frostburg State in Maryland. His most recent job was as Assistant Strength and Conditioning Coach at Texas A&M University at Kingsville where he worked with the football, track and baseball teams.

The opportunity to be the Head Strength and Conditioning coach at Carleton is something Barrett is extremely excited about. “The possibility to get to work with everybody is what I am most excited about as Head Strength and Conditioning coach,” Barrett said. “I have been an assistant everywhere I have worked. I’m excited to put in my systems and work with everybody and take pride in the athletic department.”

Barrett’s enthusiasm and expertise with several different sporting teams is one of the reasons Young said Barrett was “the top choice for the job.” Young emphasized the importance of a strength and conditioning coach who is familiar with the unique challenges and demands that Division III athletics provides.

“We wanted someone with Division III experience as it has it’s own set of challenges compared to Division I athletics,” Young said. “Division III strength and conditioning coaches are in charge of every sports team on campus, compared to a select few.”

When Barrett came across the job posting for a new Head Strength and Conditioning Coach at Carleton, he knew it was the perfect job for him. “My grandpa went to a small Division III college called Linfield. I knew I wanted to work at a Division III school because of his experience there. When the job post for Carleton came up, it was my dream job: small college in the Midwest.”

Young said that having a passionate Strength and Conditioning Coach is important because during the offseason, regular coaches are unable to contact athletes.

“Strength and conditioning for Division III is still on the cusp and is essential because coaches can’t be involved in the off-season. They help us provide quality year round training since before off season training was left to the players. The off season is where you get better and Coach Barrett is helping to ensure this is successful.”

Barrett’s plan for success relies on focusing on each sport individually and what those athletes need in order to be the best they can be in that particular sport. “I plan on changing the way athletes are training, essentially their functionality,” he said. “I want to make each athlete as athletic as possible based off of their sport. I plan on focusing on a little bit of everything rather than just one thing.” His sole expectation for student athletes are to want to better themselves and give him one hundred percent effort.

Under Barrett’s guidance, the weight room at Laird Stadium will be getting a makeover. “We are putting in brand new flooring and platforms in the weight room. I plan on making the athlete’s time in the weight room as efficient as possible,” Barrett said.

He has also already noticed some unique qualities about Carleton and Minnesota. “Working at Texas A&M, a Division II school, the athletics are different,” he said. “However, Carleton students have much greater pride in their school and academics.”

Barrett said the most drastic change in coming to Minnesota was the temperature. “It was 80 degrees when I left Texas,” he remarked.

Current athletes have already taken note of Barrett’s personalized plan towards each sport and have responded positively. Women’s soccer player Anna Huber ’19 finds Coach Barrett “approachable and dedicated to every sports team. I like that he is focused on injury prevention as well.”

Football player Emanual Williams ’20 agrees with Huber. “Coach Barrett is the right guy for the job,” he said. “I think he’s going to have every sports team ready to compete and win next year. The program he’s implemented is all about the science behind why we do a lift.

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