Saturday, January 31, 2015

Updated Results: Jack Johnson Day 2; St. Ben's Alumni Meet; Falcon Winter Classic; Mich/MSU Dual; Cobber Invite; Warren Bowlus Open; Blankenship; Michael Smith; Camel City Events

Jack Johnson Classic results are HERE.
Gopher's men's summary is HERE, women HERE.
MSU Mankato men's summary is HERE, women's HERE.
UMD women's summary is HERE.
MSU Moorhead summary is HERE.
St. Ben's Alumni Meet results are HERE.
St. Ben's summary is HERE

Falcon Winter Classic women's results are HERE, men HERE
Macalester women's summary is HERE, men's is HERE..
St. Thomas men's summary is HERE
Hamline summary is HERE..
Augsburg men's summary is HERE, women's is HERE.
St. Kate's summary is HERE.
Concordia St. Paul summary is HERE.

Michigan/Michigan State dual meet men's results are HERE, women HERE.
Michigan men's summary is HERE.Mason Ferlic PR in mile 4:05.72. Will Burke 9th in 3K in 8:25.50

Cobber Invitational results are HERE.
U-Mary summary is HERE.
Bemidji State summary is HERE.

Warren Bowlus Open results are HERE.
UMD men's summary is HERE.
Winona State  summary is HERE.

Wildcat Open men's results are HERE, women's HERE.

Wisconsin summary of Armory collegiate title HERE Michael Van Voorhis in 22nd in 8:31.03
Wayzata Smith twins, Michael and James, results at the Kane Invitational HERE.

Harun Abda interview after Camel City 800 runner up effort(1:49.51) HERE. Full 800 race results HERE.
Will Leer second in men's mile in 3:57.54  Full race results HERE.
Heather Kampf third in women's "Mellow Mile" in 4:31.24.  Full results of all races HERE. Includes men's and women's elite mile, 800, 3000, etc.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Updated Results: Jack Johnson Classic; St. Olaf Quad; Lihrman

Live results from the Jack Johnson Classic HERE. Gopher JJC preview for women HERE, men HERE.
Full Day One Results are HERE.
Gopher men's Day one Summary HERE, women HERE
MSU Moorhead Day One summary HERE.
Concordia St. Paul multi eventers summary is HERE(scroll down to the end of the summary).
St. Cloud State summary HERE.

St. Olaf Quad results HERE.
Bethel women's summary is HERE, men HERE.
St. Thomas women's summary is HERE.
Gustavus women's summary is HERE, men HERE
St. Olaf summary when available

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Mac's Mission

Mac Wilkins. Photo courtesty of
Mac Wilkins is on a mission.  He wants to return his event to the status it once held in the US.  "I came from an era when the discus in the US was successful because there were a lot of entrepreneurial geniuses," Wilkins said.  It was the era of Olympic and World Champions who were from the US, not Germany or elsewhere.

Since that time--Wilkins was the last Olympic medallist winning a silver medal in the 1984 Games along with John Powell's bronze--medals have been hard to come by for US male throwers.

Stephanie Brown Trafton won a gold medal in women's discus at the Beijing Olympics in 2008. Prior to that for the women there was only Leslie Deniz's silver from 1984. The peak of US women's discus throwing came in the 1928 and 1932 Games where Lillian Copeland won a silver in 1928 and a gold in 1932 where she was joined on the podium by Ruth Osburn who won the silver.

One medal in 30 years for the men is not acceptable for Wilkins, who has made a commitment in his post competitive life to attempt to change that.  He coached at Concordia College in Oregon and also created a throws center there to help train elite throwers who were attempting to fulfil their dreams of World and Olympic glory in the discus.  He also made frequent trips to the SPIRE Academy in Ohio to conduct clinics and teach the next generation of throwers and coaches. The rationale being that you want to tutor kids at a young age about the correct technique, so they don't have to attempt to relearn or retrain themselves later.

The discus is unique on the Olympic program as the only event at either the World Championships or the Olympics where a World Record has not been set in those competitions.  Wilkins knows a bit about setting records as he broke the men's discus record three times in one day back in 1976 becoming the first man to throw over 70 meters.

In 2013 Wilkins took a position at the USATF High Performance Center in Chula Vista to continue the work he began at Concordia through at least the 2016 Olympics in Rio.  "I'm a resource for anybody who's attempting to follow their help set up the best out-of-college throwers to go pro."  Throwers are not the "rock stars" of track and field, and there is very little financial support to allow those with Olympic aspirations to be able to reach the top of their sport without significant financial hardship.

Wilkins is hoping that USATF's recent talk of using some of the increase in sponsor money for the athletes results in monetary support for those who need it most.  That attempts, such as the staging of the shot put competition in the shadow of the Capitol Dome in Sacramento, improve the image and public recognition of the throws.

Wilkins is putting his efforts into the fundamentals, teaching the coaches and athletes of today at a young age the basics of training, the road to success in the event.  His trip to the Minnesota High School Track and Field Coaches Clinic is part of that effort.  Wilkins wants to spread around his love for the event, his passion.  "It's an act of love, an act of passion," he says about his "evangelical" mission to spread the gospel of discus throwing.  If you have  that passion, says Wilkins.  "You are compelled to share your passion.  It doesn't do any good to keep it to yourself."

Wilkins will be presenting four sessions at the clinic, two on Friday and two on Saturday.  The full schedule is HERE.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

News: MIAC & UMAC AOW; Devin Monson; Mark Wetmore; Annie Bersagel: Camel City Elite Mile

MIAC AOW of the week HERE.


Devin Monson gets promoted at Rogue HERE.

Colorado coach Mark Wetmore previews the upcoming season, talks distance running on the USTFCCCA podcast HERE.

Interview with Annie Bersagel HERE.

Renaldo Nehemiah Pays It Forward

Some of the greatest high hurdlers of all time. (From L to R) Renaldo Nehemiah,
Aries Merritt, Harrison Dillard, and Colin Jackson. Photo courtesy of IAAF
It seems fitting that the keynote speaker at this year's Minnesota State Track & Field Coaches Association Clinic has a Super Bowl ring. Renaldo "Skeets" Nehemiah was on the San Francisco 49ers Super Bowl champion team in 1984, but is better known as one of the top 110-meter high hurdlers in the world. He was the first to break the 13 second barrier in that event, and was a talented enough sprinter, sans hurdles, to be the MVP at the Penn Relays. As a high schooler, however, he was a star quarterback.

Further evidence of his multi talented athletic prowess was his four wins in the made for TV Superstars events in the 1980s. The track coaches gathered in Bloomington this weekend won't be after anecdotes on fly patterns or whether or not deflated footballs matter, but rather Nehemiah's wisdom on how to be the best at running fast over a lane of 42-inch high hurdles. Talking from his office in Reston, Virginia, Nehemiah, who now represents clients such as Olympic champion sprinter Justin Gatlin and 400 meter Olympic champion Kirani James, answered questions about his event and the things that have changed since he was the best in the world.

Technology, Nehemiah noted, has had the biggest impact on the event from camera phones, ubiquitous access to high quality video, to the composition of the track.  The hurdles are lighter and the tracks faster than in his prime, Nehemiah said. These changes have influenced how races are run and won. In his day, Nehemiah added, the composition of the track wasn't a factor. People didn't talk more about the track's features--how "fast" it was--as much as about the strengths and weaknesses of the individual athletes.

A Roger Kingdom would assault the event, crashing through hurdles with raw power, while a technician, such as China's Liu Zhang was more like Nehemiah, a virtual ballet artist who "flowed" over the hurdles much as Mikhail Baryshnikov would flow across the stage at Lincoln Center. Balance, said Nehemiah, is the key to master hurdling. At its core hurdling is an all out sprint interrupted by a series of graceful bounding through the air. A key factor in getting from start to finish as fast as one can, he noted, was combining innate athleticism with something as simple as keeping the arms moving forward in a straight line, as they would in a 100 meter sprint.  Not crossing the body, which can cause the body to pitch from side to side in wasted motion and energy instead of flash forward with all the momentum and drive pushing toward the finish.

Proper technique with the lead leg and trail leg are other skills need to be ingrained in the hurdler's "muscle memory" at an early age, so that those skills don't have to be reprogrammed later. It's far more efficient to teach the basics properly early in a hurdler's career than attempting to change a learned behavior that has been already hard wired into the neurological system, he said.

In events that are decided by razor thin margins even seemingly small "mistakes" can be the difference between winning and losing. So teaching the basics early is vital to an athlete's success. Something you can't teach, however, Nehemiah believes is the most important attribute for any athlete--the desire to get the best from yourself, to be the best you can be.  That drive for success, athletic perfection, is an essential element of an athlete's success. That devotion to always learning, always pushing for something better, never resting on one's laurels or becoming complacent is something of a cliche. Probably because it is an essential attribute for those who want to succeed in any endeavor, Nehemiah says.

It has been a feature of Nehemiah's since his earliest efforts at locomotion. His nickname, Skeets, was given to him by his parents to describe the swiftness and determination Nehemiah had during the crawling stage of his infancy. At that early age, Nehemiah was focused on the basic premise of all racing--getting to the finish line as quick as possible. Without coaching or other incentives aside from completing his task as quickly as possible, Nehemiah was creating the building blocks of a career in sprinting and hurdling.

When he talks to the coaches this weekend his task will be just as simple. He does the talks, imparts what he's learned during his career in order to give back to the sport that has given him so much. Sharing and learning so the next generation will be able to enjoy the activities that have been the foundation of his athletic pursuits for decades.

If you want to read more about Nehemiah's stats, development as an athlete go HERE.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

News: USTFCCCA College AOW; NSIC AOW, Weekly Summary; Beginner-Friendly Marathons; Athlete's Plane; Trendy Minnesota; Boston Weather

NSIC week in review and AOW for men HERE, women HERE.

Grandma's and Medtronic TC Marathon on the list of 15 of "Run, Fast, and Beginner-Friendly Marathons HERE.

Want to take a ride on the "Athlete's Plane?" HERE.

Not only are the "Minnesota Twins" of marathoning, Grandma's and Medtronic TCM, listed in all the top marathon stories, but Outside dubs Minneapolis as a XC ski "Mecca," (HERE)and the Wall Street Journal raves about the State's "Heritage Brands." (HERE)  Dare we say that Minnesota is "trendy?"

Results: USATF MN Indoor #4

All Ages meet results from USATF Indoor #4 at St. Thomas broken down by age group HERE.

Rankings: Mankato #1 in NCAA DII Men's, U-Mary 5th in Women's; Three WI Schools in Top 5 of DIII M&W

Minnesota State Mankato tops the rankings for indoor track in men's NCAA DII; U-Mary 5th in Women's HERE.

Three Wisconsin schools in the top five of men's and women's NCAA DIII rankings HERE.

Monday, January 26, 2015

News: MIAC AOW; NSIC Indoor Performance List; Amanda Smock, Meghan Peyton

MIAC men's athletes of the week for track, Colby Seyferth; field, Evan McNeil HERE. Women Ruth Steinke, track, and Alyssa Solberg field HERE

NSIC indoor performance list is HERE.

Smock jumping at the Bison Classic on  January 17. She hop, step, jumped 13.57m/ 44' 6.25"

Meghan Peyton blogs on altitude training in preparation for US XC Nationals HERE.

Rankings: NCAA DI Team; Gopher Women 5th, Men 6th in T&FN Dual Meet Top 25

NCAA DI indoor track team rankings are HERE.

Gopher women fifth in Jesse Squire's Track & Filed News' Women's Dual Meet team rankings HERE. Men are 6th HERE.

2015 Minnesota Track & Field Coaches Clinic
January 29-31, 2015 at the Bloomington DoubleTree Hotel  

Support our clinic and Association by reserving your room at the Double Tree! 
Bring you family, the DoubleTree is located 10 minutes from the Mall of America and many other family friendly activities! 

Come join us and hear former World Record Holder Renaldo Nehemiah, Olympic champion Mac Wilkins, Olympian Derek Miles, Olympic Coaches Boo Schexnayder, Lucky Huber and many more outstanding Coaches!

The $90 Clinic fee includes 48 hours of top notch Track & field instruction!  It also includes 2 free socials and a nice Banquet Meal on Friday night.  As an added bonus, we will have prize drawings sponsored by our vendors throughout the Clinic.

Clinic registration for Minnesota Coaches is online at:

Coaches from outside of Minnesota can register by emailing: or calling 218-847-6796

Any other questions can be directed to Craig Nelson at :

Science News: The Science of Speed; Fat as Fuel;

Speeding up by "slowing down" HERE.

Fat as fuel HERE.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

News: Bethel Coach Andrew Rock in WIAC HOF; Securian Winter Run Half Marathon; USATF MN Indoor #4; Gender Equality; Records; WMRA; Women Running Administrators Honored

Bethel coach Andrew Rock was inducted into the WIAC Hall of Fame HERE. Full list of inductees is HERE.

Securian Winter Run Half Marathon, 10K, and 5K results are HERE.

USATF MN Indoor meet #4 results are HERE.

Jamie Cheever on the continuing inequality in the way women athletes and coaches are treated HERE.

Summary of the World Mountain Running Association's annual winter meeting is HERE.

Twin Cities in Motion's Virginia Brophy Achman among those honored in RW.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Updated Results: MSU Open and Multis; Border Battle; St. Thomas Invitational; Iowa State Duals; Jim Emmerich/Alumni Invitational; UW Stout Open, Mac Triangular; Concordia-Moorhead Alumni Meet; North Coast Indoor; Bronco Invite; Cornell/the Smiths

MSU women's summary HERE, Men's summary is HERE.  Full results are HERE.
UMD women's recap is HERE.  UMD's Amelia Mather's win in the pentathlon is HERE.
Southwest Minnesota State summary is HERE.
Minnesota State Moorhead summary is HERE.
Winona State women's summary is HERE. WSU Day One summary is HERE.
Carleton's Colby Seyferth wins Heptathlon, Carleton men's summary HERE. Women's HERE.

Gopher men and women win the Border Battle in Madison.  Full results are HERE. men's summary is HERE. Women's HERE.  Badger men's recap is HERE. Women HERE.

St. Thomas Invitational women's results are HERE, men HERE.
St. Thomas' women's summary is HERE. Men's summary HERE.
Concordia St. Paul summary is HERE.
UMD men's summary is HERE.
Bethel men's summary is HERE, women HERE
Hamline women's summary is HERE, men HERE.
St. Olaf men's summary is HERE. Women HERE.

At the Iowa State Duals, Lakeville North grad Ben Krynski was 6th in the weight throw with a toss of 46' 4.75".  Highland Park grad Elena Breitenbucher(Drake) was 16th in 5:31.22 in the women's mile.  CDH grad Kevin Docherty(Iowa) was 10th in the men's mile in 4:20.54.  Full results are HERE.

Jim Emmerich/Alumni Invitational results at SDSU HERE.
St. Cloud State summary is HERE.
U Mary men's summary is HERE. Women's HERE.

UW Stout Open results HERE.
Bemidji State summary is HERE.
St. Mary's summaries are HERE and HERE.
St. Scholastica women's summary is HERE. Men's HERE.

Macalester Alumni Triangular Meet results are HERE.
Mac men's summary is HERE, women HERE.
St Kate's summary is HERE.
Augsburg men's summary is HERE. Women's HERE.

Concordia-Moorhead Alumni Meet results are HERE.

Christy Cazzola wins 800 in North Coast Indoor Open in 2:06.43 HERE. Full results by event HERE.

Wayzata grad McKenna Evans finishes 6th in women's mile in 5:13.23 at the Bronco Invite.  Full results by event are HERE..

Cornell meet summary HERE.

Gender Equity Complaint and U of M Bierman Athletic Village/Gophers' Track; USATF MN Youth Track Camp; Blankenship/O'Lionaird

The fate of the University of Minnesota's track may be part of an ongoing  gender equity case HERE,  HERE and  HERE.

Mankato State will host a USATF Minnesota Youth Track Camp on February 1, details HERE.

FloTrack interview with Ben Blankenship and Ciaran O'Lionaird interview is HERE.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Results: Simmons-Harvey Invitational; St. Thomas Invitational; MSU Open and Multis; SDSU

Simmonds-Harvey Invitational men's summary and M&W results are HERE. Will Burke fourth in the 3K in 8:34.04.

Heat Sheets and Schedule for St. Thomas Invite HERE.  Men's results for day one are HERE, women's HERE.
UMD men's summary of Day One HERE.

Mankato State Open and Multi men's day one summary is HERE.women's summary is HERE. Day one results are HERE.
Women's pentathlon results are HERE. UMD press release on Amelia Maher's win in the pentathlon HERE. Heptathlon day one results are HERE.
Winona State Day One summary is HERE.

Live results for Saturday's SDSU Jim Emmerich/Alumni Invitational HERE.

News: Training, Photo Finish; Gopher/Badger Border Battle; 7-7-7

While all politics may be local, all training is individual.  Research on differing response to the same training HERE.

Gopher Border Battle previews:  Gopher men's preview HERE, women HERE.  Badgers men's preview  HERE, women's HERE. Interview with Gopher's Andie Zeman HERE.  Minnesota Daily meet preview is HERE.

Saturday's Macalester Alumni Invitational info HERE.

MSU Open and Multi info and schedule is HERE.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

News: Gabe Grunewald; Dubai Marathon Live Stream

Team USA Minnesota's Gabe Grunewald talks about planning for the upcoming season.  Why she ran indoors last year, but isn't running indoors this year HERE.

Live Stream for the Dubai Marathon HERE. Began at 9 PM CST.

News: AOW; Mom Up; Technology; The Mind, the Last Taboo: Weight and Diet; Mellow Mile Preview; Sportsmanship

NSIC weekly women's summary and AOW HERE. Men's summary and AOW HERE.

MIAC women's AOW HERE. Men HERE.

WIAC women's AOW HERE. Men HERE.

Cristy Cazzola has advice for mothers who are runners; "Mom up" HERE

Cut through the philosophy jargon and you get to the issue of technology's impact on sports HERE.

The power of the mind HERE.

The "last taboo" in women's sport HERE and HERE.

Team USA Minnesota Emily Gordon's blog on weight, diet, and managing them both HERE.

Preview of January 31 Camel City Elite Races Mellow Mile is HERE.

Milwaukee tennis player's sportsmanship draws praise at the Australian Open HERE.

Monday, January 19, 2015

News: Training

Sports science writer Alex Hutchinson on "the five(new) pillars of training HERE.

News: NCAA Dual Meet Rankings

Gopher men 12th women 23rd in NCAA DI dual meet rankings HERE.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Results: Houston Half Marathon; Carlsbad

Annie Bersagel finished fifth in the Houston Half Marathon/US Half Marathon Championships on Sunday in 1:10:58. Team USA Minnesota's Meghan Peyton was 25th in 1:14:28. In the men's race, Eric Finan was 19th in 1:03:29, Joe Moore was 29th in 1:03:55,  Jon Peterson was 38th in 1:04:26, Eric Loeffler was 45th in 1:04:48.

USATF summary of the Half Marathon Championship races HERE.

Carlsbad Marathon and Half-Marathon results are HERE
Photo and results on the Post by Run N Fun.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Results: Minnesota Open; Bison Classic, St. Mary's Early Birdinal; Dordt Indoor Invitational; Bemidji State Super 8 and Multi; Holiday Inn Invitational; The Opener(STU)

NDSU Bison Classic results HERE.
NDSU men's summary is HERE, women's HERE.
Moorhead State University summary is HERE.
U Mary women's summary is HERE, men HERE

Minnesota Open results are HERE.
Gopher men's summary is HERE. women's is HERE.
St. Cloud State summary is HERE
Mankato State men's summary is HERE. Women's is HERE.
UMD women's summary is HERE.
Concordia St. Paul summary is HERE.
Hamline women's summary is HERE
Holiday Inn Invitational results are HERE.

St. Mary's Early Birdinal results are HERE.
Winona State summary is HERE.
St. Mary's summary is HERE.

Dordt Indoor Invitational results are HERE.

Bemidji State Super 8 Open and Multi results are HERE.
Bemidji State summary is HERE.
St. Scholastica men's summary.  Women's HERE.

The Opener(St. Thomas Intrasquad meet) men's results are HERE. Women's are HERE
St. Thomas men's summary is HERE. Women's HERE

Results: Heather Kampf Does the 1M/10K Double; Ellenson; Will Burke; Houston

Team USA Minnesota's Heather Kampf completed a Bermuda One Mile/10K/Half Marathon triple a win in the half marathon on Sunday. 10K results HERE(scroll down to Bermuda 10K walk and run for those results.  Further down is marathon and half-marathon.  Click on half marathon to see those results).

Edina grad Will Burke, running for Michigan, finished fourth in the 3K at the Simmons-Harvey Invitational in 8:34.04. Full results are HERE.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Results: Heather Kampf Wins KPMG Front Street Mile; Carleton Triangular; Montana State Open; Minnesota Open Results and NDSU Classic Live on Saturday

 Heather Kampf defends her title at the Front Street Mile in 4:53.32.  Results are HERE.

Carleton Triangular resutls are HERE.
Carlton men's summary is HERE, women's HERE

Montana State Open results are HERE.

Minnesota Open live results HERE on Saturday. NDSU Bison Classic live results HERE.

News: Olson/Megan Hasz; Ferlic; Ice; 2015 Pan American Games; Multi-Sport HS Athletes; Houston/Bersagel

Connor Olson and Megan Hasz selected as Gatorade Minnesota XC runners of the year for 2014 HERE .

Michigan Daily article on Mason Ferlic is HERE.

Ice.  A revised version of when and how to use it to help manage an injury HERE.

2015 Pan American Games, which will be held in Toronto, qualifying standards and selection procedures are HERE.

Even football goes for multi-sport HS athletes

FloTrack interview with Annie Bersagal prior to the Houston Half-Marathon HERE.

Gopher redshirt freshman middle distance runner Derek Wiebke named men's MVG(Most Vlauable Gopher) for January HERE. Also joined other Gophers for the team's Youth Track Clinic HERE.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

News:Garrett Heath, Mudder; Bill Miles' COY Interview; Rombough; Economics of College Basketball; Compression Clothing

USTFCCCA interview with HS boys' XC Coach of the Year Bill Miles HERE.Sun Sailor story on Miles is HERE.

An interesting look at the economics of the major college sports--in this case Kentucky basketball--HERE.

Can compression clothing aid your workout HERE?

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

News: USATF MN JO records/USATF MN Outdoor Records; Outdoor Records; NSIC Myles Brand All Academic with Distinction Award Winners; Drug Testing in Africa

USATF MN JO multi event all time records and JO meet records are HERE. USATF MN Outdoor records are HERE

NSIC schools Myles Brand All-Academic with Distinction award winners are HERE.

Financial support for a drug testing lab in East Africa pledged by World Marathon Majors HERE.

News: Bill Miles/COY; Will Leer/CTolleRun; Jon Peterson; Harun Abda; USATF.TV Broadcast Schedule; Eclipse; Ben B's Training Partner; Corrected Meet of Miles Results

RunnerSpace interview with Jon Peterson is HERE.

I'm not trying to be cocky but we really get paid to do this. We have the best job! Thanks to…
— Harun Abda (@Ha_RunAbda) January 14, 2015">Aurélie Petibon

Not a running story, more urban transport goes to the dogs:

Corrected Meet of Miles results are HERE.

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

News: NSIC Weekly Summary, AOW; UMAC AOW; Sara Tseng; USATF Board/IAAF Council Vote

NSIC men's summary and AOW HERE. women's summary and AOW HERE.

UMAC Athletes of the Week HERE

NCAA DIII indoor preseason rankings HERE


Calls for USATF Board to reverse their decision regarding the US Candidate for IAAF Council HERE.

Results: Corrected Meet of Miles Results

Meet of Miles results updated with corrections are HERE.

Monday, January 12, 2015

News: Leer; doping; Ultras/Sponsorship; Ski Rankings; Meet of Miles; MDRA

Sponsorships and ultras HERE.

MDRA Race Director Conference scheduled for Saturday.  Held in conjunction with the MDRA Annual party, details HERE.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

News: Blankenship Training: Border Battle; Roesler; Plantar Faciitis; Olympic Track

The work that leads to good times later...

More results: CDH grad Kevin Docherty was fourth in the mile in 4:17.06 at the Border Battle in Iowa City. Full results are HERE.

Flotrack Q & A with Laura Roesler is HERE.

Have plantar faciitis? HERE are some possible remedies.

If track & field has to shed events for future Olympic Games, what are the events that would do the least damage if lost?  T&F News' Gary Hill speculates HERE.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Results: Northwest Open; Michael Smith/Cornell; Bethel Open, Mankato Alumni Open

Northwest Open results are HERE.
Gopher men's summary is HERE.
Hamline men's summary is HERE.
St. Cloud State summary is HERE
Concordia St. Paul summary is HERE.
Bethel Open results are HERE.
Bethel men's summary is HERE. Women's HERE.
UMD women's summary is HERE.

Mankato Alumni Open results are HERE.
Mankato State men's summaary is HERE.Women's is HERE.
Southwest Minnesota State summary is HERE.

Heath, Derrick Defend Titles in Great Edinburgh XC; US Wins Team Title

Chris Derrick, a Stanford grad along with Heath, defended his 8K title that he won last year.  Team USA's Jon Grey was the seventh US finisher for the winning US team, 15th overall in 26:16.  Results are HERE.

Emma Bates was in the lead pack after the first lap of the women's race on a tough, sometimes muddy, slippery course in Scotland. Bates was sixth after lap two, eight seconds off the lead. As snow began to fall, Bates finished sixth in 22:01, 35 seconds behind the UK's Emilia Gorecka, who won in 21:26. Results are HERE. The US team won the team competition with 121 points. Europe was second with 189, and the UK third with 223.

Team USA's Heather Kampf  helped the US 4 by 1K mixed relay team finish fourth in the first event of the team competition. Results are HERE.  Results for all the races are being posted HERE.  The 4K men's race didn't count in the team scores.

USATF.TV highlights 4 by 1K mixed relay HERE. Men's 4K replay is HERE. Men's 8K replay is HERE. Women's 6K replay is HERE. Photos of the mud from Heather Kampf HERE.

IAAF story on the Great Edinburgh XC meet is HERE. Paul Merca's story on Garrett Heath is HERE.

Friday, January 09, 2015

News: HS Coaches of the Year; Garrett Heath; Dani Stack; Running with the Deer; Great Edinburgh XC

USTFCCCA high school XC coaches of the year by State(a Wayzata sweep) are HERE.

Thursday, January 08, 2015

News: Mead; MIAC Previews; World Athletics Coaches Ed Classes Coming to Mankato; Cheating; Winter Dog Walking; Keegan Hurley

MIAC  T&F Previews for women HERE, men HERE.

The Dog Channel's advice on winter dog walking is HERE.From MPR HERE.

Wednesday, January 07, 2015

News: Goucher; Grandma's; Come Together

Kara Goucher on her plans for 2015 HERE

Grandma's on RW editor-approved list of marathons HERE.

Toni Reavis writes on the need for sprinters and distance runners to put aside their differences for the good of the sport HERE.

Tuesday, January 06, 2015

News: Recap of USATF Masters Club XC Championships; Ask the Coach; Schwamberger; Meb; Marathon Top Ten: MN Indoor Age Group Records

A great recap of the USATF Masters Club XC Championships with photos is HERE. Run 'N Fun's men's 40+ Masters team finished seventh. Results are HERE.

Dennis Barker's latest Ask the Coach column HERE.

USTFCCCA interview with UW Eau Claire's Dan Schwamberger is HERE.

USTFCCCA Pre-season Indoor DI rankings are HERE.

Carrie Tollefson interviews Meb tommorow via Skype HERE. Bob Larsen, Meb's coach grew up in Northwestern Minnesota

Hal Higdon, a Carleton grad, lists Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon  and Grandma's among his top ten HERE.

Update on USATF MN indoor age group records are HERE.

Monday, January 05, 2015

2014 Person of the Year

Bill Miles the 2014 DtB Person of the Year
I don't know if we're starting a tradition with this or if we'll do it again, but this year we're naming a Person of the Year for 2014.  The recipient of the award is someone very familiar to those in the sport in Minnesota.  Not many people have had the wide impact Bill Miles has had during his 45 year tenure as a high school track and cross country coach. 

A lot has already been written about him.  But I realized that while we know a lot about his accomplishments, I didn't know that much else.  So, I invited Bill Miles for a chat a few weeks ago, not because I was planning on doing a Person of the Year feature, but because I wanted to know more about him.  Below are some of the things I learned.

Like most high school kids, Bill Miles, played a variety of sports at Cretin High school.  Like many runners, a basketball player was what he hoped he could be, but running became his focus, not so much for his own achievements, but because fate pushed him in that direction.

A ten minute two miler, Miles was fortunate enough to go to high school and college at a time when numbers weren't an issue.  He'd gravitated toward running because it was inclusive.  You didn't need to be one of the top runners to be part of the team.  He liked the sport enough to want to be part of a team in college and Roy Griak at the University of Minnesota was the type of coach who not only welcomed the elite, but helped nurture and develop those with less talent as well.

It was at Minnesota where fate intervened.  During his senior year at Minnesota, Miles and a teammate went back to Cretin to do a workout and had a conversation with the team's coach.  It was obvious to the coach that, even back then,  Miles had a knowledge of the sport, a grasp of all the things one might need to be a coach, and perhaps more importantly a passion for it.  Cross country was not a high priority in the school's athletic department.

"He said he took the job to prevent them dropping cross country as a sport," said Miles.  He didn't have a passion for the sport, just a sense of preservation.  Would Miles consider coaching the team, he asked.  Miles was shocked by the offer, but intrigued.  He hadn't planned on being a teacher, must less a coach.  Miles had none of the certification needed.  All he had was the knowledge and the passion.

Miles thought the opportunity was too good to pass up, but he also knew it would mean leaving the Gopher team.  He went back to tell Griak.  Said he had this job offer and that if he took it he couldn't run for the team. get his school work done, and coach.

Griak gave his blessing, and Miles took the job.  Miles was  wise enough to know what he didn't know and he sought out other coaches for advice and guidance.  Minneapolis Southwest was the dominant team in cross country in Minnesota then.  To win a state title in the sport in Minnesota the challenge was simple, you had to beat Southwest.  At that time the Catholic schools, such as Cretin, had a separate championship, so Cretin didn't have to go up against Southwest to get a state title.  The school's legendary coach, Al Halley, was ready to retire.

Miles found a mentor in Halley whose instructions to his team members was "to be the best you can be...or quit."  Cretin also had the good fortunate of having a glut of talent.  Starting from a program that only had a handful of kids coming out for the sport, Miles had a number of very talented runners who joined the program.  The Roth twins were two of the top runners in the state.  Then there was a hockey player named Don Hurley, who really wanted to be a professional hockey player, but his potential was such that he had the talent to be an outstanding runner.

Fate stepped in again at this point, however, as Miles overheard a conversation among the Cretin administration one day in the lunch room.  The conversation centered around hiring and salaries, and it was made clear that hiring a teacher for a lower salary had a big influence on who was hired and who was let go.  There was no tenure at Cretin, thus Miles knew that the chances he would finish his career at Cretin were slim.

Not long after that Wayzata High School was in the market for a coach.  Miles had a short but impressive resume.  Again, through chance Miles was offered the job and he took it, but not before some unfinished business at Cretin.  Miles had a conversation with Hurley.  "Promise me that you'll keep running," Hurley remembers Miles telling him.  Hurley not only kept running he won two individual state titles in cross country.

Miles had not only shown that he could recognize talent, but also develop that talent.  He'd be the first to tell you he has no secret formula or plan.  He talks about the rivalry between Stillwater's teams under Scott Christensen and his own.  The conversation doesn't focus won/lost statistics, but, as Christensen echoes when he talks about it, the value of the rivalry.

He says that if you took the same group of kids some would perform better under his program, which he describes as focusing on building endurance, and another would thrive on Christensen's, which is centered on developing speed.

Both have been at it a long time.  Neither one was going to change.  They each developed champions, but neither one has the answer for all athletes.  The key being that both develop talented athletes, and the schools push each other to new heights along with other legacy programs at Edina, Hopkins, Marshall, Eden Prairie, Burnsville, etc..

Miles has been more than a coach.  He, along with his brother, Tim Miles, who coaches at St. Johns, are the stewarts of Minnesota high school track stats history.  The Miles Lists keep track of performances of each year's boys' athletes along with an anually updated list of the all time lists in each event.

After our conversation, he was headed off to the Minnesota History Center to do more data mining.  Bill Miles may have left the coaching profession behind, but he'll still be chronicling the performances, watching the kids develop.  For one of the keys to Miles' success has been the inclusiveness, call it the no child left behind program for coaching.  For 45 years Miles has given them a "home away from home," a place to explore their own talent, motivation, discipline, and personalities.

For his service and devotion to the sport, Bill Miles has been selected as the first DtB Person of the Year.