John Ybarra, a 2012 US Olympic Trials competitor who has also competed in the shot put at the last three USA track and field championships, joined the Yale track and field staff as throws coach in the winter of 2012-13.
Ybarra came to Yale with an impressive list of accomplishments both as a competitor and as an assistant coach. He finished fifth at the 2011 USA Indoor National Track and Field Championships and finished 2010 ranked in the top 20 in the shot put in the United States. He was a five-time Division II All-American in the shot put at Adams State College, where he also earned Academic All-American honors.
From the spring of 2008 through the spring of 2012, Ybarra served as an assistant coach at Adams State, helping the men’s team win the NCAA Division II team championship indoors in 2010 and outdoors in 2012. He coached the 2009 indoor national champion in the shot put, and his throwers earned 14 All-American honors. One of his female throwers had the fifth-furthest discus throw in NCAA Division II history (180’9”). In addition to coaching a 2008 Olympic qualifier in the women’s discus, Ybarra coached his athletes to 32 NCAA Division II national qualifying marks. Ybarra also spent time as the team’s recruiting coordinator, and was part of the staff when Adams State hosted the 2010 and 2011 NCAA DII Indoor Track and Field Championships.
Since Ybarra took over as throws coach, Yale has continued to achieve great success in all of the throw events. Apart from star Mike Levine, several other athletes have emerged as scoring threats, and the discus and hammer throws, especially, have emerged as strengths of the team.
Ybarra earned his B.A. in human performance from Adams State in 2007, then earned an M.A. in that same field from Adams State a year later. He earned the 2008 NCAA DII Post-Graduate Scholarship Athlete of the Year Award. In 2011 he added an M.B.A. in public administration from Adams State.
Ybarra has been working as a sports performance trainer at MVP Sports Holland since September. He was Director of Strength and Conditioning at Adams State from Jan. 2011 through May 2012, and also served as a strength and conditioning coach there from August 2008 through December 2010.