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November 20, 2017

Thoughts on the NCAA Cross Country Championships

Jesse Squire breaks down his thoughts and observations from the 2017 NCAA Cross Country National Championships, where he was on-site for the action.

November 20, 2017

PHOTOS: 2017 NCAA Cross Country National Championship

Check out our photo gallery of shots from the 2017 NCAA Cross Country National Championships captured by Brandon Sotelo in Louisville, Kentucky.

November 20, 2017

What we learned from the 2017 NCAA Cross Country National Championships

Processing some of the results from the 2017 NCAA cross country national championships where the New Mexico women and NAU men took home team titles.

November 15, 2017

Throwback Cross Country Races That Every Runner Should Watch, Know

Jesse Squire takes us through 3 cross country races that every runner should watch and know. Races include Steve Prefontaine, Alberto Salazar and more.

November 14, 2017

A Visual History of the NCAA XC Championships and What It Tells Us

Jesse Squire provides a visual display of the past NCAA cross country championships and what it may mean for the 2017 NCAA Championship.

November 13, 2017

Remember when Jorge Torres lost his mind for Dathan Ritzenhein?

The finish of the 2003 NCAA Cross Country National Championships between Dathan Ritzenhein and Ryan Hall is epic and the call is even better.

November 13, 2017

The Case For and Against San Francisco Winning The NCAA Cross Country Title

Isaac Wood lays out some of the reasons why he could see the San Francisco women’s team winning the NCAA cross country championship.

November 13, 2017

The Case For and Against NAU Winning The NCAA Cross Country Title

Isaac Wood breaks down the reasons why Northern Arizona’s men will and won’t defend their 2017 NCAA Cross Country National Championship.

November 9, 2017

The $hark’$ Guide to Getting Rich Off of Per Diem

One day you’re going to graduate college and if you don’t know any better, you’re going to misuse that per diem in the future at a real job.

November 2, 2017

The Athlete Special: SUB 9 TIME TRIAL AND PRESS CONFERENCE?!?!

The Georgetown boys get together for a heated two-mile race. The press conference may be one of the most heated in the history of sports.

October 31, 2017

The Man, The Myth, The Legend: Robert Cosby at 2010 WCC Champs

A very short story behind Robert Crosby’s blue collar run at the 2010 WCC Championships, where he broke San Francisco’s heart.

October 30, 2017

Everything You Need To Know From A Wild Conference Championship Weekend

From BYU’s perfect score to Columbia’s first-to-last turnaround, get your fill on all the best moments from conference championship weekend 2017.

October 25, 2017

Louie Luchini on the Stanford “Machine,” Best Ryan Hall Story and Politics in the Age of Trump

Kevin Liao chats cross country and a hint of politics with former Stanford star and current Maine House of Representatives member Louie Luchini.

October 16, 2017

The Athlete Special – PRE-NATIONALS: Two Worlds Collide

Had a good time at Pre-Nationals but the best part of this episode of the Athlete Special may be the cameo by Emma Abrahamson.

October 15, 2017

What happened in cross country this weekend? Wisconsin & Pre-Nats

Taking in all of the weekend’s action from the Wisconsin Invite and Pre-Nats: Who is better NAU or BYU? Who runs for Portland? Can the New Mexico women win?

October 13, 2017

PreNats Preview: BYU vs. Arkansas, New Individual Champions To Be Crowned

New individual champions will be crowned at the 2017 PreNats but we will see a great team battle between BYU and Arkansas in the men’s race.

October 10, 2017

Should the NCAA add the half marathon?

Chris and Stephen got bored and decided to trade Slack messages about whether the NCAA should add the half marathon. Here are their thoughts.

October 6, 2017

Feast your eyes on the best male athlete portraits in track and field (Part IX)

Picture day is something to look forward to every year. These runners surely made the most out of their respective roster portraits. Part IX.

October 2, 2017

Wood Report: Thoughts On A Big Cross Country Weekend

Isaac Wood breaks down the importance of what took place at cross country meets across the country. Furman, Alabama, Dillon Maggard among big performers.

October 2, 2017

Finding Value In Caring About Running

Jenny DeSouchet explains the value of having passion for something, like running, even when it may feel selfish or pointless or crazy.

October 1, 2017

The Athlete Special – CROSS COUNTRY SEASON DEBUT: Paul Short Invitational 2017

Spencer Brown tries his luck at racing cross country for the first time this year when he takes on the Paul Short Invitational.

October 1, 2017

What happened in cross country this weekend?

Taking a look at the results from the weekend’s cross country action in South Bend, Louisville, Springfield, Stillwater and more.

September 30, 2017

Some thoughts after the Bill Dellinger Invitational – BYU rocks, Rainsberger flies

Katie Rainsberger smashes the course record and BYU takes 1–4 on the men’s side of the Bill Dellinger Invitational on Friday.

September 25, 2017

An Ode To Boston University Coach Bruce Lehane

Bruce Lehane served as the Boston University coach for over 35 years. During that time, he coached 50 NCAA Division 1 All-Americans, two NCAA Champions and two Olympians. This past Saturday, Lehane passed awayat the age of 68 after a bout with ALS. Bruce wasn’t only a long-time coach with a long list of accolades, but he was a big part of the Boston running community as well. Katie Matthews, class of 2012, wrote a tribute to Lehane after running under his tutelage for five years in college and for the start of her professional running career, as well as serving a stint as an assistant coach at BU.  


It wasn’t until late into my high school career that I considered running for a Division I track program. As I reached out my feelers into the world of collegiate running opportunities, very few top level coaches saw the potential in my 5:04 mile PR, lack of Footlocker XC appearances, or my recent stress fracture.

But Bruce Lehane did. In fact, he told me later that he saw something in me the day I ran to a dismal 40th place finish at a Footlocker regional meet, something I’ll never quite understand.

His recruiting philosophy had always been to place the most time and energy to those individuals already voicing interest in Boston University and his team. I was one of those prospects. Boasting a strong academic focus where major and class selection was valued over practice commitments, it seemed like BU would be a perfect fit for someone like me, where running was giving me an opportunity to afford to attend a very expensive private university but wouldn’t be my main reason for heading to college.

I ran well the first two years at BU, but nothing stellar. However, I developed a strong relationship with Bruce through hundreds of talks in his office, van rides to Franklin Park practices and always picking his brain for advice. I had the somewhat unique experience of entering the team with Bruce’s son, Elliot, and some of his Brookline High teammates from the revered 2008 NXN class who knew Bruce previously. I don’t know if it was befriending them that helped me feel comfort, or having girls who had such respect for, belief in, and success with Bruce take me under their wings, but the team instantly felt like a family.

Bruce Lehane

Whenever Bruce got to telling a story, we usually received much beyond training philosophy. His talks morphed into Boston running history lessons: tales of his former coach Billy Squires leading Salazar, Rodgers, and Beardsley to early success, and the way the running landscape here had changed in the years since. We heard about him growing up in Southie in the 50s, building the famous BU indoor track and from what was the old Armory on Commonwealth Ave., and anecdotes of his sons and home life.

Plenty of his stories focused on collegiate athletes he had coached before us — those whose workouts we were mimicking or who had set records. He always emphasized their character and worth ethic above all else. I learned what being a blue-collar runner was really about. When questioned about training trends or new technology, his favorite catch phrase was always ,“the way to get better at running is by running.”

I soon found I wanted to know everything he could tell me, and eventually what he imparted on me clicked.

In a Hartford Courant article from 2013, Bruce was asked about my jump in performance. He’s quoted as saying “She just transformed. She was sixth in the America East as a sophomore in the 5,000. The next year, she was sixth in the NCAAs in the 5,000. She just took this gigantic leap.”

What Bruce humbly brushed off as a coincidence and no minor fault of his own was anything but. Bruce motivated me and led me to success in a way that was truly unique. He rarely celebrated victories but simply wanted his athletes to learn from each race and move on to the next challenge. Receiving a hug or ‘congratulations’ from Bruce was something my teammates and I used to track for its rarity. With that being said, every single athlete on the team wanted to perform well and better themselves for him. Getting a loud shout from Bruce to pick it up during the last 800m of a race really carried some weight.

Bruce had a way of making each athlete feel like the most important one on the team. He looked for and saw the best in each runner he coached. He guided us all to make strong decisions about the way we spent our energy balancing the many facets of college life and in pursuing of our own goals outside of the sports arena. He put the responsibility in our own hands to become great or remain mediocre. Countless times we were given a workout or race plan to follow through without him in attendance. Whether it was because we were missing practice due to a class commitment or because he was with the other half of the squad at a different track meet, it was on us to figure out the logistics of getting the work in.

On the flip side, Bruce was always willing to come to the indoor track early or stay late into the evening to oversee a workout. Usually it would be a bread and butter workout like 600, 600, 800 x 2, with him quietly reading the splits from the sideline. If we were sick or an injury was nagging, we simply missed the workout for that day and proceeded in training as if we had done it. If we missed more than a couple workouts, we did not race, as Bruce always err on the side of caution. If we were to become injured, as I did during my 2012 season, it wasn’t because of too high mileage or intense workouts, it was due to failure on our part to be smart in recovery and training load.

Track trips became opportunities to explore different parts of the country. Whereas some coaches would have their athletes rest in the hotel for days leading up to competition, I traveled with Bruce to Niagara Falls, the Space Needle, Pier 39, the plains of Texas, and the Oregon coast to name a few places. If we wanted to come into his office and just chat, not about running but just about what was going on in our lives, his door was always open. Under his careful guidance, I eventually lowered my PRs to a 9:05 3k, 15:42 5k, and a 32:44 10k.

In the running community, Bruce was known for his laid-back demeanor. However, the way he loved his athletes was anything but. I’ll never know if I would have had the same athletic achievements under another coach, but I do know I wouldn’t have forged the same relationships, career path, and life philosophy as I have now. Given his humble attitude, he wouldn’t accept me saying so, but I owe so much to this wonderful man.

I remember one day, early in my professional running career, we were having a chat in his office.  I had been lamenting over some petty dating woes and off handedly mentioned wanting to be single and not have to deal with finding a partner.  Bruce became serious, and threw away a comment I said about being “independent.” He said, “But you do need to find someone — sharing your life with someone is one of the most beautiful gifts you’ll ever receive.”

In the years since, I’ve come to realize he was right. It doesn’t matter if you have all the stories, money, skills, or fortune in the world, if you don’t have anyone to share them with, they don’t matter. And Bruce had lots of people to share his life with.

Watching someone I love battle with ALS throughout the last couple of years has been heartbreaking. My thoughts and heart go out to his wife, Lesley, and sons Blaize, Elliot, and Aidan. Thank you for sharing your husband and father with me and so many others. We are all better people for knowing him.

Bruce, wherever you are, I hope you are getting in some quality miles.

Bruce Lehane

Lehane with Katie Matthews

 

September 20, 2017

Feast your eyes on the best male athlete portraits in track and field (Part VIII)

Picture day is something to look forward to every year. These runners surely made the most out of their respective roster portraits. Part VII.

September 17, 2017

Cross Country is Here. The Athlete Special Season 6

Season 6 of the The Athlete Special kicks off with a subtle shot at The Wood Report’s rankings and a look at an early Georgetown XC workout.

September 13, 2017

Feast your eyes on the best male athlete portraits in track and field (Part VII)

Picture day is something to look forward to every year. These runners surely made the most out of their respective roster portraits. Part VII.

September 12, 2017

Wood Report: Syracuse’s Justyn Knight tops NCAA XC Preseason Rankings

Projecting and predicting every finisher at the NCAA Division I Cross Country National Championship. Justyn Knight tops the list.

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August 31, 2017

CITIUS Mailbag: Who do you think will win the NCAA title?

The CITIUS Mailbag is open and ready to take reader questions. Email or tweet us your best cross country musings. Right now: Who will win the men’s title?

August 28, 2017

How to avoid burnout in running: A search for answers

How do we prevent burnout? Some runners believe that they know the secret better than others. Some routines work and others don’t.

August 28, 2017

Last year’s NCAA XC returners and some questions surrounding them

Karissa Schweizer returns to defend her NCAA Cross Country crown but she will be challenges with six of last year’s top 10.

August 25, 2017

Track Talk: What’s your favorite part of cross country season?

The leaves are starting to change colors. We consulted with our good friend what’s their favorite part of cross country season.

August 25, 2017

The King Is Gone: Who Is The Most Feared NCAA XC Runner Now?

With the departure of Ed Cheserek & Patrick Tiernan unable to defend his title, the throne is empty. What runner is favored and feared ahead of the season?

August 23, 2017

NCAA Cross Country Coaches and Their NBA Equivalent

What once started as a bar conversation is now a blog post. Thinking of NCAA Cross Country coaches and their notable NBA equivalents.

August 22, 2017

The Alabama Additions That Could Shake Up The NCAA XC Scene

There’s a chance that Gilbert Kigen and Vincent Kiprop could make an instant impact on the front of the NCAA cross country scene.

August 21, 2017

Your First Day of Cross Country

A look at how your first day of cross country practice will go. Beware this will be your life for the next four to five years as well.

August 9, 2017

Recognizing the Division II Stars At Worlds

From Drew Windle to Kibwe Johnson, highlighting some of the Division II stars that have found their way to the 2017 IAAF World Championships in London.

July 24, 2017

Attempting a 200-mile week

Zach Kughn and Ethan Wilhelm will soon attempt to run a 200-mile week as they try to settle a little bar argument that took place in April.

July 14, 2017

Postcard from Kenya: Sarah Mwangi’s journey to UTEP

Next month, Sarah Mwangi fly from Nairobi to El Paso to start her four years at UTEP. Her flight will be the last and easiest leg of her journey.

July 10, 2017

The Athlete Special: Craziest Race of My Life

I was able to find a mile race last second. I was hoping the weather would hold up…

Also stick around for the end of the episode for a special announcement…

PS: Just got a Garmin so add me on Strava.

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