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Olympic Gold Medalists Join The Speed City Staff

SAN JOSE, Calif. – Director of Track & Field/XC Charles Ryan is announcing the additions of Olympic Gold Medalist’s Tianna Madison and David Verburg to the San José State coaching staff. 

“Our program lives in a constant state of evolution, and these world-class additions are going to help elevate our team and the overall experience of our Student-Athletes to a whole new level. We are incredibly fortunate to have them,” Ryan said about his new coaches. 

Tianna Madison is one of the most decorated athletes in global history. Her 16 year International career produced 13 Medals over various disciplines, including 6 International Gold Medals, Including 3x Olympic Golds and a World Record. Madison is one of only 4 women in world history to have both run under 11.00 seconds in the 100m dash and jump over 7.00m in the Long Jump. 

Career Highlights:

Madison’s International career was launched in 2005 when as a sophomore at the University of Tennessee she became one of the youngest World Champions in history capturing the IAAF World Championship Gold Medal in the Long Jump in Helsinki, Finland. 

In 2006, after leaving Tennessee early to pursue a professional career signed to Nike, Madison won her second Global Gold Medal in the Long jump at the 2006 Indoor World Championships in Moscow, Russia. 

In 2012, Madison would make her first Olympic Team, but in her secondary event. She qualified for the Games of the XXX Olympiad held in London, England for Team USA in the 100m Dash and set a new then lifetime best in the Olympic Final of 10.85 seconds to finish 4th overall, just missing the podium. 

Later in the London games Madison would lead her teammates Allyson Felix, Bianca Knight, and Carmelita Jeter to the greatest 4x100m Relay performance of all-time setting a new World Record of 40.82 seconds.

In 2016, Madison would conquer the world again, only this time both as a jumper and a sprinter. She would qualify for the Games of the XXXI Olympiad in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil by running lifetime best 10.78 seconds in the 100m Dash at the 2016 Olympic Trials in Eugene, Oregon. While simultaneously contesting and qualifying for Team USA in the Long Jump. In the Rio Long Jump final, on her penultimate attempt, Madison would set a new Lifetime best of 7.17m (23’5 1/4”) to take the Olympic Gold Medal.

Later in the Rio Games, after a controversial preliminary round that saw Team USA Disqualified after Allyson Felix failed to make the exchange to English Gardner, Team USA was reinstated, replay evidence showing Brazil interfered with Team USA’s ability to make the exchange. Madison and her teammates were forced to run additional, solo, qualifying performances to secure their spot in the final. Madison would again lead her team through that unprecedented scenario and in the Olympic Final she would lead her teammates Allyson Felix, English Gardner, and the late Tori Bowie to the second fastest performance of all time, 41.01 seconds to secure her 3rd Olympic Gold Medal.

In addition to her Olympic glory, Madison’s career is also highlighted by six individual World Championship medals. Three-time World Champion Gold (Helsinki 2005 Long Jump, Moscow 2006 Long Jump, Beijing 2015 Long Jump) and a three-time Bronze Medalist (Sopot 2014 60m Dash, Istanbul 2012 60m Dash, and London 2017 Long Jump) 

The 2021 U.S. Olympic Trials marked the end of Tianna Madison’s professional career when she failed to qualify for the Tokyo Games. Finishing 13th overall in the 100m Dash (11.09) and 10th in the Long Jump (6.54m). Unknown to her at the time, it was reality that she arrived at the Olympic Trials roughly nine weeks pregnant. Just a few weeks prior, Madison would set a new US Masters Record in the 100m Dash of 10.96 Seconds, a record previously held by Gail Deevers. 

Madison’s Career PR’s: 100m - 10.78 * 200m - 22.37 * Long Jump - 7.17m * 4x100m - 40.82 (WR)

In 2023, Madison was honored with induction into both the University of Tennessee Hall of Fame and the State of Tennessee Sports Hall of fame. In her short two years as a Lady Vol Madison left a legacy of greatness. Two-time SEC Champion in the Long Jump, two-time NCAA Champion in the Long jump, SEC Freshman of the Year Honors, and helped the Lady Vols capture the 2005 NCAA Indoor Team Championship. 

Madison’s excellence extends far beyond the athletics realm. She is also a published author, Honor student, mental health professional, entrepreneur, advocate, and mother. 2021 Madison authored her memoir under her previous name, Tianna Bartoletta, entitled Survive & Advance. A detailed account and perspective of her life on and off the track from Childhood through 2017. Survive & Advance: 9781735919317: Bartoletta, Tianna: Books

In 2021, she gave birth to her son Kai Madison Ryan, surviving a very difficult and life threatening delivery at only 26 weeks Cobra Kai — Tianna Tashelle. Shortly after the birth of her son, Madison returned to her academic pursuits and completed her Bachelor of Science in Social Work (BSSW) graduating Cum Laude in 2023 From the University of Tennessee Olympic Gold Medalist Tianna (Bartoletta) Madison Earns Online BSSW - Vols Online. She remains passionate about education, and in her role with the SJSU staff, she will serve as assistant coach to the sprinters and horizontal jumps working directly and collaboratively with Director Charles Ryan and Coach TJ Harris who coordinates and coaches the field event programs. Madison will also serve the SJSU Student-Athletes in their academic pursuits and with their overall mental health. 

David Verburg was a stalwart relay figure for Team USA, earning six global Gold medals over his professional career, including an Olympic Gold Medal from the Games of the XXXI Olympiad held in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil in 2016, as a member of the 4x400m Relay. Verburg also helped secure three World Championships for Team USA in the 4x400 as well, Moscow 2013, Beijing 2015, and Sopot 2014 (Indoors). He was also a member of two separate Team USA Gold Medal 4x400m teams at the World Relays in Nassau, Bahamas (2014, 2015, & 2017). Ultimately, Verburg’s International career spanned 16 years, starting in 2010 when he was a part of the quartet that delivered Team USA the Gold Medal at the IAAF World Junior Championships in Moncton, Canada. He has a lifetime personal best of 44.41 seconds over 400m from USA Outdoor Championship semi finals in 2015. Verburg would go on to be crowned the 2015 USA Champion at 400m. 

In his NCAA career Verburg was an 11x NCAA All-American while competing for George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. He graduated in 2013 earning his degree in Sports Management. Here at San José State, his voluntary role on the staff will be serving primarily with the sprint and middle distance Student-Athletes. 

In 2018, Verburg officially entered the coaching ranks, serving as an Assistant Coach at Lake Sumter State College. 

The 32-year-old Verburg is a native of Oklahoma City, Okla., but his running career was launched on the east coast, graduating from E.C. Glass High School in Lynchburg, Va. (Class of 2009) where he still holds the 400m school record at 47.15. He was featured on the Ellen DeGeneres Show in 2018 for his strong support of animal rights after a video of him running into traffic to save a turtle went viral. Verburg launched the Golden Tortoise Rescue Foundation shortly after that in Florida. 

“We could not be more thrilled to add David to the staff. He brings such a unique perspective from his career. His work ethic and commitment is something I hope our young athletes truly appreciate and take note of,” said Ryan. “His career is a shining example of everything we are trying to teach these young people to be and how to do it right.”

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