Bethel College named veteran coach Kelly Parsley to lead the Threshers’ track and cross country programs beginning this fall.
Parslet coached at Park Point University, an NAIA school in Pittsburgh, from 2014 to 2019, starting the program from scratch. He helped lead the Park Point women to a second-place finish in the River States Conference outdoor and first indoor this year. The men swept the indoor and outdoor titles. The women were 12th in the NAIA outdoors and fifth indoors. The men were 65th outdoor and 57th indoors.
The both the men and women won the conference title in cross country and both finished 18th nationally.
"We are very pleased to announce the hiring of Coach Parsley," Bethel athletic director Tony Hoops said. “I look forward to watching him grow our program in ways in which he did at Point Park and other institutions."
"I want to thank Tony Hoops and the administration of Bethel College for this incredible opportunity," said Parsley said. “I am excited to start a new chapter in my coaching career."
Parsley has been named a conference coach of the year 10 times. He coached five individual NAIA national champions, the last was Anna Shields in 2018 in cross country. He coached a total of 14 NAIA All-Americans.
A number of his teams took academic recognition as well.
"Bethel College has everything to offer the student-athlete; a quality liberal arts education, great athletic facilities, and a commitment to excellence in the classroom and on the field," said Parsley.m”I am looking forward to working with motivated staff to continue and build on the successes of the Thresher Cross Country and Track and Field teams."
He also coached at Lindenwood-Belleville (NAIA), Webster University (NCAA Division III), Lake Forest College (NCAA Division III) and Goldey Beacom College (NCAA Division II).
“It became more clear each day that he was the best fit to elevate our cross country and track and field programs to another level,” Hoops said. "To hire a high caliber coach such as Kelly is a strong indicator of what others see within the potential of our track and field and cross country programs here at Bethel. I can't wait to see how he works with our devoted staff to continue the improvement of all Bethel athletic programs."
Parsley graduated from California University of Pennsylvania with a degree in communications in 1996. He also competed in track at CUP.