Presbyterian College and Athletic Director Danny Sterling announced Friday the addition of GJ Hudgens as the new men’s and women’s cross country head coach. He will start in early July.
“It is with great pleasure that we welcome GJ. (Hudgens) to the Presbyterian College family,” said Sterling. “A former Division I track athlete at Alabama, he is a well-respected track & field and cross country instructor and will bring immeasurable experience to the cross country team. He has trained many athletes to compete at the national level and with his knowledge and skills he will help elevate the cross country program at PC even more.”
Hudgens replaces Thad Palmer, who served as head coach of the cross country teams for 11 seasons before being elevated to Director of Athletic Communications for Game Operations this spring.
Hudgens has been a middle distance and sprint coach for nine years. He has coached junior high and high school teams in Nashville, Tenn., and Atlanta, Ga., to compete on a state level and led others to compete at national meets in the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) and USA Track & Field association (USATF).
“I'm very happy to be joining Presbyterian College,” said Hudgens. “It’s an honor to be given the opportunity to work with PC student-athletes and at an institution that is committed to developing a well-rounded student that wants to succeed in the classroom as well as on the course. I hope to bring a new level of excitement and growth to the cross country program.”
Most recently, Hudgens has been assistant track coach at Holy Innocents’ Episcopal School in Atlanta, Ga., while also serving as a USATF Certified Head Coach at Talon Track.
Prior to his time in Atlanta, Hudgens was an assistant track coach at Christ Presbyterian Academy in Brentwood, Tenn.
Since 2009, he has been private coach, specializing in sprint, middle distance running, distance running, and general fitness for athletes 13 and up.
He competed at Alabama for two years, earning Academic All-American Honors in 2007. Hudgens graduated in 2013 from Watkins College of Art, Design and Film with a degree in Film and Writing.
A former record-holder in the 800-meter at Vanderbilt’s Great 8 Track Meet in 2005, and the 2005 and 2006 TSSAA 800-meter state champion, Hudgens was trained by former Olympic Decathlete Gary Kinder.