Troutman’s state title was part of family tradition

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By Mike Farner

 LOUISVILLE - The state championship won by Bullitt East’s Trevor Troutman in the discus was certainly a historic performance on the local level.

Obviously, the event was historic because it had been 36 years since a Bullitt County male had won a state championship in track.

However, the history doesn’t end there. The two championships had two things in common. First, they both came in the same event, the discus. Second, both titles were won by a Troutman. In 1975 it was Jimmy Troutman winning the event that was held at Western Kentucky University. In 2011 it was his son, winning the title on the last of his six throws that day.

What wasn’t the same was that Jimmy Troutman’s title was won while he was at Bullitt Central, the only state title that the school has produced in a KHSAA sponsored event. Trevor Troutman won while competing at Bullitt East.

This year, the three state track meets were held on three consecutive days. That means that there were some different conditions and different sub-plots, but Trevor Troutman’s throw of 164-11 was the best discus performance of the week. Oldham County’s, Isaac Bowling, who beat Troutman a few times this spring, won the Class AAA event at 160-02. The winning effort in Class A was by Reed Cohen of Kentucky Country Day at 151-0.

Trevor Troutman’s performance was good enough to get him selected as a member of Team Kentucky at the USATF World Youth Track and Field Championships in Myrtle Beach, June 28-29. If Troutman has one of the top two performances in that event, he will be selected to compete for the United States in the IAAF World Youth Championships in Lile, France later in the summer.

The discus certainly runs deep in this branch of the Troutman family. While the family name is well known for basketball in Bullitt County, Jimmy and Trevor concentrate on track. In fact, Trevor does no other sport than track, competing in both the discus and the shot put. The younger Troutman is the first to say that the discus is his main event, but he made major strides this season in the shot put only to struggle at the state meet.

The father/son twosome are a pair. When there are the rare track meets in Bullitt County, Jimmy is helping run the discus and shot put events. I’ve never been to a Bullitt East practice since Trevor joined the team and not seen dad helping with the strength events.

A few weeks ago, Jimmy recalled winning that state title in 1975 while a senior at Bullitt Central. His winning throw that day was 152-10.

The coach at Bullitt Central at the time was Larry Wingfield. He led the Cougars to back-to-back regional titles in that time period and as he will quickly point out, they were a dropped baton from making it back-to-back-to-back titles.

Wingfield left Bullitt Central after the 1975 season to coach at Shelby County where he coached both individual and team state champions multiple times.

Now retired from coaching and living in Ohio, Wingfield still volunteers his time to the KHSAA as a track and field official, often being the director at regional meets as well as working at the state championships. He was working at the Class AA meet this spring and he had a big smile when he found out that a second Troutman had won a state championship.

Amazingly, Wingfield remembered the 1975 state championships as if they were yesterday. He quickly said ‘152-10’ when I asked him about that day. “It was the only one (title) I had (at Bullitt Central).”

Wingfield went on to recall that the discus final that year was thrown into a mess when the competitors arrived to find out that they would have to all throw a ‘common’ discus instead of using the one they brought with them and had been using all spring.

“It was slick,” Wingfield recalled of the new implements that year. “He faulted on his first two throws. It just slipped out of his hand. I told him just to stand there and throw one to qualify. Then he got better.”

In the discus, each competitor gets three throws. After that, the top however many then advance to the final and get three more throws. Any of the six throws can be that competitors best throw.

Wingfield did say that Jimmy Troutman was sort of an unknown at the time, but that in practice leading up to the state meet he had been throwing over 170-feet.

The former Cougar coach wondered if Jimmy Troutman still held the school record which he remembered being around 159. I said that Bullitt Central has had some good discus throwers over the past 36 years, but that I doubt if anyone has beaten that mark.