Bulldog Track & Field Headed To Atlanta For Yellow Jacket Invite
Shaunae Miller's 400m Track Title Highlights Georgia's Trip To NCAAs
Bahamas native George Cleare joined the Bulldog coaching staff prior to the 2011 season and is responsible for the women's sprints, relays, jumps, hurdles and combined events.
During his third season in red and black, Cleare directed freshman Shaunae Miller to the 2013 NCAA indoor title in the 400-meter dash. The fellow Bahamian also was the runner-up at the NCAA Outdoor Championships, clocked the fifth-fastest (50.88) and 10th-fastest (51.27) indoor 400m times in collegiate history and set school records in both the indoor and outdoor 400m in her one season with the Lady Bulldogs. Miller, who has since joined the professional ranks, also finished one spot shy of the podium at the 2013 IAAF World Championships after clocking a 200m time of 22.74 for fourth place. She became the youngest finalist for the the 200m at the World Championships in history.
Cleare, a native of Nassau, Bahamas, brings a wealth of international coaching experience to Georgia's staff after having been the head coach for the Bahamas national team during the World Championships and also an assistant coach of the squad in the past.
While Miller shined, Cleare's crew also grabbed five other All-American certificates and a pair of SEC championships and were key components to the Lady Bulldogs finishing in the top 11 at both the NCAA indoor and outdoor meets. High jumper Saniel Atkinson-Grier cleared six feet to win the SEC outdoor crown while freshman long jumper Chanice Porter twice reached 21 feet during the indoor season and finished first at the conference meet. In addition, Cleare guided sprinter Tynia Gaither to a 23.23 at the 2013 NCAA Outdoor Championships.
In 2012, Cleare guided Atkinson-Grier to runner-up finishes at both the SEC indoor and outdoor meets as well as a First Team All-America finish at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. Atkinson-Grier helped the Lady Bulldogs score 108 points at the 2012 SEC Outdoor Championships, which is the third-best total in history and tops since Georgia's 2006 conference championship. Atkinson then cleared a school record height of 6 ft., 2 ¼ in. at the Jamaican National Championships during the summer.
Cleare was also instrumental in landing the Lady Bulldogs Track & Field News' fourth-best recruiting class for 2013, the team's best ranking of this sort in history. Bahamian sprinter and World Junior champion Shaunae Miller, Jamaican jumping phenom Chanice Porter and All-American Myasia Jacobs were three of the student-athletes Cleare led to Athens during the offseason.
In his first season with Georgia, Cleare guided a pair of Lady Bulldog seniors to record four new or improved top-10 times in the Georgia record books. Outdoors, Georgina Nembhard clocked the fifth-fastest 200-meter dash time (23.40) in school history mid-way through the season while Odeika Bent recorded the school's ninth-fastest mark (23.78) at the SEC meet. Bent also finished the league championship with the seventh-best 400 time in UGA history at 53.97. During the indoor campaign, Bent sped to the No. 5 time on the Lady Bulldog top-10 list in the 400 (54.57) at a "last chance" NCAA qualifying meet.
Cleare's corps also contributed to Georgia's fourth-place finish at the SEC Outdoor Championships. Nembhard scored in the 100 at the 2011 league outdoor meet and she, along with Bent, was a leg on the Lady Bulldog foursome who also added a point in the 4x100 relay.
Cleare has also helped guide other standouts such as Bahamas native Debbie Ferguson, who was a four-time NCAA champion and 20-time All-American while attending Georgia in the late 1990s and who has competed in the last five Olympics, to notable finishes in top-level meets across the world.
Most recently, Cleare has held leading posts in a variety of organizations. While serving as head coach for Team Bahamas at the 2013 IAAF World Championships, he also was the women's national relay team co-coordinator for the Bahamas Association of Athletics Associations in recent years and directed (Level I) IAAF Coaches Education and Certification System courses.
He has served as the head coach and president of the Bahamas Speed Dynamics Track and Field Club and Mentoring Program during his time in his native nation. Cleare planned athletic training schedules and models and organized after-school programs for the youth while leading this program.
The 2003 National Coach for the Bahamas, Cleare was the National Relay Coordinator and relay coach at the Penn Relays, Carifta Games, CAC Championships, World Youth Championships and World Championships in 2009. He also had the same role for the World Junior Championships in 2008.
Also on his resume, he was either the head coach or an assistant coach at the Carifta Games in 2003, 2004 and 2006 and served as the President of the Bahamas Coaches Association from 2003-04.
Five Olympians from the last four Olympic Games have worked with Cleare. Ferguson, winner of three Olympic medals and one of the newest additions to the University of Georgia's Circle of Honor for her academic and athletic success during and since college, highlights this group. Cleare worked with the 2000 Gold medalist in the 4x100-meter relay in four-month spans of the offseason as Ferguson developed into one of the most dominant female sprinters of all-time.
Cleare has guided a host of athletes to immense success on various national teams. Athletes who he has coached have won scores of medals at the Carifta Games, World Championships, Pan-American Games, World Junior Championships and the Commonwealth Games, among others.
An IAAF Level IV certified coach in sprints, hurdles and relays, Cleare received his Bachelors of Science in Business Administration from Galilee College in Nassau, Bahamas, in 2009.
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