Indiana State University Newsroom

Blue and White Homecoming under way

October 9, 2014

It's Homecoming weekend at Indiana State University.

The 52nd running of the Sycamore Tricycle Derby is Friday's main event. It is scheduled for 4 p.m. at the Michael Simmons Activity Center. The teams, who will compete in two separate races, reflect campus life - sororities, fraternities, residence halls and student organizations.

Activities ramp up on Saturday, beginning with the 98th annual Blue and White Parade at 9 a.m. The parade route runs from Ninth and Cherry streets to Wabash Avenue and then west on Wabash before turning north on Fifth Street and ending at Tippecanoe Street.

John McNichols, the dean of Sycamore coaches, will serve as grand marshal for this year's parade. McNichols is in his 32nd season as men's track & field and cross country coach and his 26th year as the coordinator of the combined men's and women's track & field and cross country programs.

Since his arrival, the Sycamore men have won 10 Missouri Valley Conference outdoor track and field titles, eight conference cross country titles and three indoor track and field titles. He has led the Sycamores to four Indiana Intercollegiate cross country championships and the combined programs have won 34 conference championships during his tenure.

McNichols has been named MVC Outdoor Coach of the Year 11 times, Indoor Track and Field Coach of the Year three times, NCAA District V Outdoor Track and Field Coach of the Year four times and was the Great Lakes Region Cross Country Coach of the Year in 2009. He one of only 11 coaches in conference history to be named to the league's track and field All-Centennial Team, joining women's cross country head coach John Gartland to form the only coaching tandem on the all-time list.

He served as a meet official in the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles, the 1987 Pan-American Games in Indianapolis and the 1988 U.S. Olympic Trials. In 1996, he served as a head marshal at the Olympic Games in Atlanta. Additionally, he served as the men's commissioner of U.S. Olympic Festivals in Raleigh/Durham, N.C., Oklahoma City, Minneapolis, Los Angeles and San Antonio. He was head coach for the U.S. men's team at the 2011 and 1999 Junior Pan-Am Track and Field Championships and served on the NCAA Division I Track & Field Subcommittee in 2010.

McNichols designed and developed the cross country coach at the Wabash Valley Family Sports Center in eastern Vigo County, considered by many to be the finest course of its kind in the nation. The course has served as the site of the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships for 12 of the past 13 years, bringing thousands of visitors and national recognition to Terre Haute.

Following the parade, the festivities continue at Memorial Stadium with Tent City, featuring live entertainment, and the Homecoming football game against Illinois State, with kick-off set for 3 p.m. Fans are asked to enter the stadium grounds from Brown Avenue or Locust Street.

Traffic, parking restrictions for Homecoming parade

Beginning at 11:59 p.m. Friday, parking will be prohibited on Cherry Street from Fifth to Ninth streets, Chestnut Street from Fourth to Fifth streets and Fifth and Ninth streets from Cherry to Tippecanoe streets. During the parade on Saturday, the following streets will be closed: Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth and Ninth Streets from Wabash Avenue to Tippecanoe Street, Larry Bird Avenue and Eagle, Chestnut, Cherry, Sycamore, Spruce, and Tippecanoe streets from Fifth to Ninth streets.

Photo: - John McNichols

Media contact and writer: Dave Taylor, media relations director, Office of Communications and Marketing, Indiana State University, 812-237-3743 or