INDIANAPOLIS — The Marian University Cycling program will have a new leadership structure as it launches into the 2019-2020 academic year, new collegiate cycling season, and into a new generation of excellence. The university announced today that head coach Dean Peterson is undertaking new duties with the university and will transition team management to new leaders, Marian alumni John Hoopingarner ’15 and Michael Kubancsek ’13.
Peterson, who has led the Knights cycling program full-time since 2006, will remain as the Director of Cycling, but is stepping into a new role with Marian University’s Klipsch Educators College as the Program Manager for City Connects. Peterson will also pursue a Ph.D. in American Studies with a focus on Education in America at IUPUI, while continuing to advise and guide the cycling team staff over the next several years. This new model will allow Marian Cycling to provide more professional support than ever before.
Beginning to take on responsibility for the day-to-day management of the cycling team will be new hire Hoopingarner, in the role of Director of Cycling Performance, alongside Kubancsek, who continues in his role as Director of Cycling Operations.
Hoopingarner earned a degree in Sports Performance and competed with the cycling team as a track, mountain bike, cyclocross, and road rider. While a student at Marian, he participated in show choir and served as the student manager for the Power Booster™ indoor cycling program.
Having stayed involved in the cycling industry over the last several years, working for Indianapolis-based SRAM and SILCA, and as an active race announcer, Hoopingarner has lent his voice to almost every event at the Indy Cycloplex for several seasons, making him familiar with the Marian Cycling program and the events at the Cycloplex. In his role as Director of Cycling Performance, he will directly oversee student-cyclist training plans, team practices, and overall student-athlete well-being, as well as manage the campus cycling center and Power Booster™ studio.
“After more than a decade with Marian Cycling, I’m looking forward to advising the younger staff as they begin to take on leadership of the program and remain involved as a ‘guide on the side’ while moving back into my roots in education,” Peterson said. “Knowing that my responsibilities beyond the cycling program were evolving due to new pursuits, it was important to me to know we had other coaches steeped in our program’s approach and philosophy who can be more available to serve and connect with our student-athletes. And I am extremely grateful for every opportunity that Marian University has provided me, and continues to provide to me by allowing to pursue my hopes and dreams through this new role.”
Hoopingarner and Kubancsek will share responsibility for team management, including recruiting, athlete care, marketing/sponsorship, travel and logistics, training, and more. Both will also work alongside Peterson at the Indy Cycloplex to manage the park’s calendar of more than 50 event days as well as facility operations and community engagement.
“Having been a part of this team as a student-athlete, I’m pleased to be coming back to Marian to begin my dream job,” reflected Hoopingarner. “I’m looking forward to working for Marian and providing guidance to members of the team as the new generations of student-athletes develop over the years.”
Over time, with significant support from the university and a dedicated coaching staff, the team has grown rapidly in roster size, athlete diversity, and on- and off- bike success. The Cycling Knights have won the last seven USA Cycling Collegiate Division I Team Omnium Championships, the title bestowed upon the collegiate program that has had the most success in all five disciplines for the year. The team has a total of 45 National Team titles and holds a record of eight USA Cycling Club of the Year awards (2009, 2011, 2013-2018), an award which evaluates not only on-bike performance, but team GPA, retention, post-graduation success, and community engagement.
Marian University Cycling alumni include those who have competed at the highest levels of the sport including the Olympics and professional tours, and those who hung up their bikes after college in favor of careers in a variety of fields including education, business, healthcare, and beyond.
“Every member of our coaching staff, both paid and volunteer, has been carefully selected to help the program and its athletes achieve their goals,” Peterson said. “Each coach has been developed through this program and is committed to its philosophy.”
“We’re excited to see what our student-athletes will accomplish both on and off the bike this year, the years of their collegiate experience, and in their lives,” Peterson added.
The Cycling Knights kick off the season with competition on the track and head to Rock Hill, SC for the first national championship of the year in mid-September.
About Marian University Indianapolis
Founded in 1937, Marian University is the only Catholic university in Indianapolis and central Indiana. In 2019, Marian is serving more than 2,400 undergraduate and 1,160 graduate students earning degrees in the arts, business, education, engineering, math, medicine, nursing, ministry, and the natural and physical sciences. The university’s high-impact, experiential curriculum is designed to provide hands-on, collaborative learning opportunities for students from 45 states and 23 nations. Marian climbed in U.S. News & World Report’s 2019 Midwestern rankings to be named #10 Most Innovative Regional University, #24 Best Value University, and #38 Best Regional University. Marian University opened its College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2013, making it the first new school of medicine in the state of Indiana in 110 years. Marian’s national champion varsity athletic programs include the 2012 and 2015 NAIA Football National Championship, the 2016 and 2017 NAIA Women’s Basketball Championship, and more than 40 USA Cycling national championships.