Ricky Argro captained the 2006 Florida State men’s track & field team to an NCAA title as a senior, four years after the Noles placed 57th during his freshman year.
Through his first five seasons as the men’s sprints and relays coach, the Noles are following a similar arc. FSU was 64th at the 2016 outdoor championships and 17th in 2019, after placing sixth indoors.
Argro’s sprinters have been instrumental in that ascent. Over the past two-and-a-half seasons his charges have piled up 13 All-American honors between the indoor and outdoor campaigns and 10 ACC champions, leading to four out of five possible team titles through the 2020 ACC Indoor Championships. The Noles won their third consecutive ACC Indoor title in February and also spent four weeks ranked No. 1 nationally.
Despite the absence of his top sprinter due to injury, Argro saw freshman Taylor Banks and sophomore Jhevaughn Matherson qualify for the 2020 NCAA Indoor Championships, which were cancelled by the Coronavirus Pandemic.
Forced to rebuild the roster upon his arrival, Argro replenished the ranks by landing stars Darryl Haraway, Andre Ewers, Kasaun James, Matherson and Banks, and surrounding them with quality complementary pieces through resourceful recruiting and development.
That was especially evident in 2019 when James swept ACC Indoor Championship Track MVP and ACC Indoor Track Performer of the Year honors, while Ewers won his second consecutive ACC Outdoor Championship Track MVP honor. Bryand Rincher’s accolades spanned the 2019 indoor and outdoor seasons, sweeping ACC Freshman of the Year honors. Rincher was the lone Nole to earn first-team All-American honors in both seasons as the only freshman to advance to the NCAA finals in the 60-meter and 100-meter dashes.
Banks added to the list, claiming the 2020 ACC Indoor Freshman of the Year honors.
FSU’s new depth was on display when they charged from sixth place entering the final day of the ACC Indoor Championships to a share of the team title. The Noles qualified a conference-record six men to the 60-meter dash finals and piled up 25 points, and stacked on 29 points in the 200 final with a 1-2-3 finish leading five finalists.
Haraway, the centerpiece to Argro’s first recruiting class, was the 2017 ACC Indoor 60- and 200-meter champion, earning Track MVP honors.
In all, Argro’s men have amassed 42 All-ACC honors, including 20 first-team selections.
The 2019 4×100 relay team of Rincher, Matherson, Michael Timpson and Ewers broke the NCAA Championship record in a runner-up finish at 38.08.
In 2018, Ewers matched Dentarius Locke’s school record in the 60-meter dash (6.52).Totaled, Argro’s men have added 16 new additions to the all-time top-10 lists between the indoor and outdoor seasons.
The success further validates Bob Braman’s 2015 hiring of Argro, who built his reputation as a high school and private coach in Central Florida since graduating from FSU in 2006. Argro guided Orlando’s First Academy to three consecutive 1A boys state runner-up finishes and the girls to back-to-back top-eight showings, producing 15 state champions.
In addition to that team success, Argro also helped develop former Noles sprinter Marvin Bracy, a 2016 Olympian, and his cousin Levonte Whitfield, who starred for the FSU football team. Together they were the top-ranked 100-meter high school runners nationally from 2011-13. Additionally, he coached future NCAA champion and Team USA member Teahna Daniels at First Academy.
Argro’s passion for coaching has roots back to his days at Lyman High School, where he was mentored by Fred Finke and Marcus O’Dell. It was nurtured during his four seasons with the Noles, where he helped qualify two All-American 4×100 relay teams to the NCAA Championship meet, while earning All-ACC honors under Ken Harnden, the man he replaced on the FSU staff.
Argro and his wife Iona are the proud parents of four daughters – Tamera, Isis, Yahirah and London.