Coach Kevin Kramer took over the cross country program when he first came to Shelbyville and for 27 years he has been a faithful steward of the successful program. He recently earned his 200th dual win, placing him in the Top 10 of all time IHSA cross country coaches.
Kramer was fortunate to coach a team to 6th place at state, and then last year’s team to 3rd place at state, earning the school’s first-ever state cross country trophy.
“When I was hired at Shelbyville, Gerald Temples was coaching football and track and Tonya Kern was coaching volleyball,” said Coach Kramer. “They were always in the playoffs or going to state. Coach Woolverton had three titles in baseball. I thought, ‘Man, I’ve gotta be successful to keep up with the Joneses.’”
Kramer continued, “The cross country team had been to state 3 out of 5 years with runners like the Yockeys, the Matons, and Mike Schaeffer. Shelbyville had a great tradition and winning programs. I just wanted to try and uphold that.”
Kramer mentioned other former SHS cross country coaches like Larry Beavers, Andy Cichalewski, Bob Herdes, and Lindsey Camfield, who had preceded him, and had good teams.
Kramer was not originally a cross country guy. He was a sprinter in college. But when he got to go home and teach at Erie, Illinois, he fell into it.
“I started coaching under Roger Fredrickson and he had taken Erie to 3rd place at state,” Kramer said. “I was the athletic director, was teaching, coaching golf helping in cross country and track. Then next year , Roger left, and I had to follow him coaching cross country.”
Kramer has been coaching cross country and track ever since. He may not have known cross country real well, but he was willing to learn from other coaches.