Former Texas track and field coach Mario Sategna has been hired as an assistant coach at Arkansas. (LAURA SKELDING / AMERICAN-STATESMAN)

Kirk Bohls

American-Statesman Staff


Texas track coach Mario Sategna granted leave of absence

Posted September 12th, 2016


Texas head track coach Mario Sategna has requested and been granted an “indefinite” leave of absence by the university, a school official told the American-Statesman on Monday.

No other details were given. There is no timetable for his return.

“We can’t say anything further,” a school spokesman said.


Tonja Buford-Bailey, who coaches the Longhorn sprinters, hurdlers and relay runners, and field events assistant Ty Sevin were named interim acting co-head coaches in Sategna’s absence.

Sategna did not reply to a message left for him.

Sategna has been hugely successful in his three seasons as head coach of the men’s and women’s track and field teams. Texas swept the men’s and women’s Big 12 Outdoor Track & Field Championships for the second straight year in May. It was the first time in Big 12 history that a school swept those titles in back to back years.

Under Sategna, Texas also swept the men’s and women’s Big 12 Indoor Track & Field Championships in 2015. The women won again in 2016, but the men were second, losing by a 1.5 point margin to Oklahoma State (130-128.5).

He has led the Longhorns to six individual NCAA titles and served as the throwing assistant coach for Team USA at the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro where former Longhorns Ryan Crouser and Michelle Carter both won gold in the shot put.

He served as an assistant Longhorns coach for 10 years before being promoted to the head coaching position in June 2013. Sategna served as the personal coach of former Longhorns Trey Hardee and Andre Manson at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing and of Hardee and long jumper Marquise Goodwin at the London Games in 2012.