Colorado’s first female three-time cross country All-American, Heather Burroughs is in her 12th season on the staff of her alma mater, assisting head coach Mark Wetmore with the men’s and women’s teams. Since joining the staff, she has assisted with 15 conference championship teams, five NCAA championship teams and 123 All-Americans. Burroughs was promoted to associate head coach following the 2011 season where the Buffs swept the inaugural Pac-12 Cross Country Championships to win the newly-formed conference’s first two team championships.
In Burroughs’ 11 track seasons assisting the men’s and women’s middle and long distance runners, CU athletes have made an impact at the conference, NCAA, American and world levels. To date, 39 have captured individual conference titles and 67 have earned All-American accolades. The women have won 10 individual NCAA titles and have broken six collegiate records. Since 2007, CU runners with eligibility remaining have won four U.S. outdoor titles and earned four berths on U.S. outdoor world championship teams as well as three individual berths on the U.S. Olympic Team.
Burroughs, in partnership with Wetmore, coaches CU post-collegians Emma Coburn and Jenny Simpson, who have combined for 13 individual U.S. track titles. In 2014, Coburn became the fastest women’s steeplechaser in U.S. history and earned a No. 2 world ranking. Simpson, who won a silver medal in the 1,500-meter run at the 2013 IAAF World Championship, won the 2014 IAAF Diamond League title at 1,500 and earned the No. 1 world ranking in the event. At the conclusion of 2014, Burroughs and Wetmore were named the USA Track & Field Co-Coaches of the Year.
During Burroughs’ CU cross country career, she was a top-five and all-conference finisher each of her four seasons, as well as an All-American in 1994, ’95 and ’98. The CU women finished in the top four of the NCAA in three of those seasons, including a runner-up finish in 1995.
On the track, she was the Big 8 Conference Women’s Indoor Track Newcomer of the Year in 1995. She won one conference individual title, scored in 15 conference races and was an indoor 5,000-meter All-American. Burroughs qualified for six NCAA indoor and outdoor races during her career.
Burroughs was born in Kansas City, Kan. And attended Pembroke Hill High School. She graduated from CU in 1999 with a Bachelor of Arts in biology.