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Cross Country Teams Welcome Argeo Cruz as Head Coach

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FGCU Athletics

The men’s and women’s cross country teams begin a new era under new head coach Argeo Cruz, making him the third head coach in program history.

Cruz has a long history at FGCU. He was a student-athlete for the Eagles from 2010 through 2014. In that time, Cruz earned many honors in the ASUN Conference, including the ASUN All-Freshman team, ASUN Academic All-Conference team and ASUN First Team according to the FGCU Athletics website. He also set records for FGCU in the 5k, 8k and 10k and was named to the NCAA South All-Region Team as a senior.

After being a runner for the Eagles, Cruz joined the staff as an assistant coach in 2014 after graduating. He stayed in that position for cross country through 2021, according to the FGCU Athletics website.

“Now that this opportunity opened up, it is an exciting opportunity for me to just be back at FGCU. I feel proud to be part of this athletic program, just because they gave me an opportunity from day one,” Cruz said. “So now being the head coach of the program, I’m excited. I’m excited to be leading the program now. And keep improving, keep doing well athletically and also academically.”

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Two student-athletes on the teams, senior Bramwell Havi and sophomore Gabrielle Spain, appreciate Cruz coming in as the new head coach of the program and have witnessed the positive impact he has had on both teams already.

“He was here last semester with the team and he got to know most of us. So we were grateful to have him back because he already knew the team,” Havi said. “And he already saw us and hung out around us. He’s pushing us to be the best. And we wanted a good coach and we got one. So we just got to take advantage of that.”

“Coach Cruz stepped in and filled any roles he could. And then, now coming into spring, we all are looking really strong. It’s really promising. We’re off to a good start. I think it’s going very well with the new leadership and everything,” Spain said.

Given that Cruz was on the team under the previous head coach, Cassandra Goodson, he’s been able to offer a different perspective to the runners that also were on the team when Goodson was coaching. Havi and Spain said that there aren’t too many stark differences in how Cruz coaches them, but there are individual things that stand out that they have liked about Cruz and his coaching style as head coach.

“I like how involved he is even at practice. Like he’s there running back and forth, yelling out splits, he’s just very involved in everything we do. And you can tell he’s very passionate about the sport and passionate about his job and what he’s doing,” Spain said. “And seeing that from a coach makes you even more inspired and passionate about your running. Like it’s contagious. I just want to keep working towards my goals and everything like that.”

Cruz said he learned a lot when he was in college and when coaching under Goodson and it was a great experience for him. He was also able to learn more about what things do and don’t work in coaching. To Cruz, it’s all unique and he said now that he’s head coach, he’s able to implement everything he wants. 

Cruz said that there are many reasons why he’s stayed with FGCU for so long, but the one that stands out to him now is the connection aspect throughout the coaches, staff and student-athletes.

“I feel like there’s a good connection between the athletic staff and the student-athletes. I feel like, you know, that’s one of the reasons I have been around here for as long as I have,” Cruz said. “Just the environment, just a good support group that we have between the staff, and also, you know, just working with the student-athletes. They’re motivated, you know, young men, young women, that just being around them makes me want to do my best on a day-to-day basis.”

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About the Contributor
James Curtis, Eagle News Sports Editor
James Curtis is a senior majoring in journalism and minoring in global studies. He is from Tampa, FL, and has known he wanted to be a journalist since taking a journalism class in seventh grade. He has been involved in sports for his whole life, including swimming competitively all the way through high school. His goal now is to be a sports journalist. When not covering sports games or writing stories, he's usually spending his free time with his friends or watching YouTube.

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