JJ Updike was a distinguished coach and athletic administrator in the Harrisonburg City Schools for 35 years. Most notable was her outstanding 31 year reign as the Blue Streaks girls’ track coach. Between 1975 and 2006 JJ’s track
teams achieved a record of 245 wins and 74 losses, the 4th highest win total in state history.
Within this record was a state-record streak of 44 consecutive wins in dual/tri meets, during her career JJ’s teams won 7 district and three regional championships, and were state champions in 1979 and 1994. Twelve times Blue Streak athletes won state championships in individual events, and in 1979 the Streaks finished 1st in three separate events. The Blue Streaks also won the city-county meet a total of 12 times between 1978 and 1994.
Besides her accomplishments as girls’ track coach, JJ has also served five years as a cheerleading coach, girls’ assistant basketball coach 1971-88, assistant athletic director at HHS from 1986-89 and athletic director at Thomas Harrison Middle School 1989-2006. JJ is a 1967 graduate of Elkton High School and a 1971 graduate of Madison College, where she was a cheerleading captain for 3 years.
JJ is a member of a number of professional organizations and has received numerous awards during her career. She is a three time finalist for National Girls’ Track Coach of the Year, the 2005 Virginia Girls’ Track Coach of the Year and 2006 Educator of the Year for the City of Harrisonburg. In 2006 JJ was honored for her achievements by induction into the Virginia High School League Hall of Fame.