Track and field coach of West Texas A&M University, Matt Stewart, has described Benjamin Azamati’s improvement since the athlete joined the program as the fastest in his 11 year stay as the head coach.

Azamati, who joined the Buff Nation (as the school is affectionately known) from the University of Ghana, has made incredible strides in the sprints.

Benjamin won 100m gold in his last race at the Ghana Universities Sports Association (GUSA) Games with a time of 10.61s. And then he made the unreal jump in the space of months to record a time of 9.97s to win become Ghana’s fastest man in history.

The young star, now gunning to break the national 200m record after running 20.13s, joined the trio of Sean Safo-Antwi, Paul Amoah and Joseph Manu to qualify Ghana for her first 4x100m Olympic relay event since 2004.

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Matt Stewart, affectionately called ‘Stew’, is Azamati’s coach. He has confessed in an exclusive to JoySports that the level of growth and development of the 23-year-old is the speediest he’s witnessed in his time at the university.

“This is the fastest I have developed by far. I think last year with the Covid year and everything, I didn’t get the chance to see him. I only had him in January last year, so I didn’t get much time to work with him. So once we had a full summer, he really spent a lot of time getting better and working with our strength coach, Matt Segura, who has done a great job with him. He just kept getting better.”

Retrospectively, the coronavirus outbreak just when he joined via scholarship caused months of inactivity, but that was not enough to dampen the spirits of the Ghanaian. Stewart acknowledges the grit of his student and believes Azamati deserves the laurels coming his way, after a tight start in Texas.

“We had a full fall training with him, so four to five months. You saw it there – you saw some things that we did in testing. 30 meters acceleration, 300 metres time trials, you saw some things like. This guy is going to be special, and then once we got through indoor, outdoor obviously we’ve seen such a rapid development. He’s earned it, he’s worked hard for it.”

Azamati is the fastest improving Athlete in West Texas University –Athletics Coach

Azamati was named the Lone Star Conference Male Track Athlete of the Year after becoming the first Buff to win an individual national title at the NCAA Division II Indoor Track & Field Championships. Azamati’s impressive indoor season saw him win also the national title in the 60-meter dash, score 16 points for the Buffs at the 2021 NCAA DII Indoor Track & Field Championships as West Texas finished on the podium for the first time in program history.

The Ghanaian is now the 200m NCAA DII record holder, broke the LSC, the LSC meet and school record and ranks him fourth among all collegiate runners.

Coach Stewart has been handling Benjamin ever since the national 100m record holder landed in the States. Also an alumni of Texas A&M, Stewart this year begun his fourth season in charge of the Track and Field program at the university. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Sports Science at the University in 2006 and has worked there for the past 11 years.