Coach Dan O'Connell
JD, University of Colorado, Boulder
MA, University of Colorado, Boulder
Dan O’Connell has been coaching cross-country at St. Andrew’s since 1999, and has been head coach since 2000. Before coming to St. Andrew’s, Coach O’Connell lived in Colorado for nine years, where he studied, worked, and raced at distances from five kilometers to fifty miles. O’Connell was a varsity runner at Haverford College under coach Tom Donnelly. While at Haverford, O’Connell competed for six seasons on the track (at 800, 1500 and 3000 meters) and cross-country teams. Before college, O’Connell set several school records for the Chatham Township High School track and cross-country teams in New Jersey.
Coach O’Connell works to create a team atmosphere that is both supportive and competitive with an end goal of instilling a love of running. Whether a student has his goal set on finishing a five kilometer course without walking, or winning the state championship, O’Connell focuses on helping each runner achieve his goals.
SAS runners under Coach O’Connell have earned twenty-seven top-twenty-five finishes at the DIAA Division II State Championship race. As a team, the Saints have eared fifth or better every year for the past ten years (2006 to 2015). They have been the third-place Division II State Championship team four times since 2008.
Graduates of O’Connell’s SAS cross country teams have gone on to run for Colorado College, Dalhouise University, Franklin and Marshall College, Haverford College, Salve Regina University, Sewanee: University of the South, Washington and Lee University, and Villanova University.