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Dave Cleveland
Dave Cleveland
Title: Head Track & Field Coach
Phone: 515-961-1402

Cleveland's Credentials

  • 11 seasons as Simpson's head coach
  • 25 All-Americans
  • 52 Iowa Conference Champions
  • 5 Iowa Conference Most Valuable Performers
  • 2-time IIAC Coach of the Year

The 2017 season marks Dave Cleveland’s 12th as the head track and field coach at Simpson. Since taking over the program in 2006, Cleveland has coached 25 All-Americans, 52 conference champions and five conference championship MVPs. Cleveland is a two-time IIAC Coach of the Year.

Cleveland is coming off one of his most impressive seasons during his tenure at Simpson. He led the men's team to a third-place finish at the IIAC Indoor Championships, giving his staff Coaching Staff of the Year honors. Cleveland groomed a young, talented group of sprinters that won conference titles in the indoor 4x200, the outdoor 4x100 and took home an individual title in the indoor 200 (Emmitt Wheatley). The 4x100 team set four school records throughout the season, breaking what was a 23-year old mark in the event.

Cleveland has sent at least one athlete to the Division III National Meet in each of his 11 seasons, most recently sending three men to the outdoor meet in 2016. Sophomore Dylan Kalinay became Cleveland's 25th All-American with an eighth-place effort in the 110-meter hurdles at the Division III Outdoor Track and Field Championships in 2016. The highest finish by a Simpson athlete at nationals under Cleveland came in 2010 when Catie Ellingson placed second in the outdoor 1500 meters.

In 2008, Cleveland earned Iowa Conference Indoor Women’s Coach of the Year honors and in 2010 he led the women’s team top-20 finishes at indoor and outdoor nationals, finishing the outdoor season ranked No. 9 in the nation by the USTFCCCA.

Cleveland's student-athletes excel in the classroom as well and are a perennial fixture on the USTFCCCA All-Academic Team.

Prior to his arrival at Simpson College, Cleveland served as the head boys’ track coach at Cedar Falls High School from 1994-2005. Cleveland led Cedar Falls to top five finishes at the 1998, 2004 and 2005 state track meets. He was named Mississippi Valley Conference Coach of the Year four times (1998-99, 2000, 2002) and was named Iowa Association of Track Coaches Regional Coach of the Year in 1998 and 1999.

While at Cedar Falls, Cleveland was a biology teacher and also assistant varsity boys’ basketball coach (1994-2001) and assistant varsity football coach (1994-95). Cleveland moved to Cedar Falls from Webster City High School where he was the head girls’ track coach from 1990-94. He led Webster City to four straight conference championships from 1990-94.

Cleveland is a 1990 graduate of University of Northern Iowa where he was a three-time Conference High Jump Champion (1988-90) and a five-time Academic All-Conference selection. Cleveland received his master’s degree from Viterbo University (Wis.) in 2001 and teaches in the Physical Education Department at Simpson. Cleveland recently received his Masters of Science in Educational Leadership degree from Drake University.

Dave and his wife Terra, son Max, and daughters Langley and Brinley reside in Indianola.


Cleveland's All-Americans

Year Name Event Place Indoor/Outdoor
2016 Dylan Kalinay 110mH 8th Outdoor
2013 John Cord Decathlon 6th Outdoor
2012 Catie Ellingson 1500m 4th Outdoor
Kinsey Bak High Jump 7th Outdoor
 Ben Coy 400m 8th Outdoor
2011 Kinsey Bak High Jump 4th Indoor
Catie Ellingson Mile 5th Indoor
Kinsey Bak High Jump 6th Outdoor
Chelsey Degen Discus 8th Outdoor
2010 Kinsey Bak High Jump 3rd Indoor
Lauren Bucklin 55mH 4th Indoor
Catie Ellingson 1500m 2nd Outdoor
Lauren Bucklin 100mH 4th Outdoor
Kinsey Bak High Jump 5th Outdoor
Lauren Bucklin 400mH 8th Outdoor
2009 Lauren Bucklin 55mH 5th Indoor
Lauren Bucklin 100mH 3rd Outdoor
Catie Ellingson 1500m 5th Outdoor
Lauren Bucklin 400mH 8th Outdoor
2008 Catie Ellingson 800m 5th Indoor
Lauren Bucklin 55mH 8th Indoor
Lauren Bucklin 100mH 8th Outdoor
2007 Kelsey Hagerty Javelin 7th Outdoor
2006 Caroline Capper Weight Throw 8th Indoor
Caroline Capper Hammer Throw 6th Outdoor


top national finish under Cleveland