Brett Carney appointed new Boys Track Coach

Sometime in the somewhat distant past, the Ames High Boys Track program was one of the best in the state (just take a gander at the trophy corner, the hanging plaques, the wall of fame, etc. etc.) Though the team is arguably still pretty strong, the last time Boys Track won a State Championship was when most of were still learning how to crawl. For more than 40 years, Coach Sletten has led the Boys Track team to more than a few State Championships and experienced both the highs and lows of Ames High Track. But all good things must come to an end; Coach Sletten decided to retire at the end of last year and leave the program in the hands of an illustrious former AHS Track member. Enter Brett Carney. “We did a statewide search once we knew Coach Sletten was going to retire.” Athletic Director Judge Johnston said. “We went after Brett just based on his accomplishments and him knowing the Ames community and I think it’s really neat to hire one of our graduates. He was an all-American runner at Iowa state, a state record holder Ames high, and he’s been very involved in track in field community since he got done at Iowa State.” “I was fortunate that [Coach Sletten] believed enough in my abilities.” Carney said. “It was just the right timing; I was a college coach for 14 years so I have a really strong background. Coaching high school over college will definitely be different, the kids will have a little more excitement than what I’m used to, so it’ll be a good challenge for me. I’m looking forward to working with young energetic kids, I think seeing kids grow has always been kind of a passion of mine.” Already ahead of the crowd, Carney has set several goals for himself and the Boys Track team this year. He’s looking to boost numbers because the more kids there are, the more competition there will be within the team, and everybody gets better. Besides looking to improve team standings in the conference, he’s also hoping to lead the team to a state final within the next five years. But there are a lot of hurdles in his way. “The other challenge that I have now is that soccer is a huge sport and it’s at the same time as track.” he said. “So you’re splitting your athletes especially your good fast athletes. So I’d like to try to see if we can to utilize athletes for two sports. I know a lot of your better programs like Valley, Dowling Catholic they do that a lot with their athletes; they have two programs and both programs benefit.” With ambitious goals and plenty of experience, Carney may just be what the AHS Boys Track program needs. “He’s following a legend of 40 plus years, which is unheard of for a coach to coach at one high school.” Johnston said. “It’s pretty special that [Carney] can come back and give back to the school that was good to [him]. “I was fortunate enough that they wanted to hire me.” Carney said. “And I guess as badly as I wanted the position, I guess it worked out well.”