October 23, 2001
2001 BIG TEN CROSS COUNTRY CHAMPIONSHIP
Sun., Oct. 28 W 5K-10:45 a.m. M 8K-11:30 a.m. (Savoy, Illinois-Orange and Blue Golf Course)
Seeking a Title in Savoy
The University of Illinois hosts the 2001 Big Ten Men's and Women's Cross Country Championship on the Illini's Orange and Blue Golf Course in Savoy. The women's 5K kicks off at 10:45 a.m. followed by the men's 8K at 11:30 a.m. For additional championship information, including directions to the course, visit the Big Ten Conference web site at www.bigten.org, choose the sport of cross country, and click Championship Information. Admission to the race and parking are free of charge.
Hear the Head Coaches
Men's Head Coach Robert Chapman: "I think we are an extemely dangerous team heading into the championship part of the season. We're in the exact same position this year as last year - a top 25 national ranking and fourth in the conference on paper. We had a fantastic Big Ten race last year, where we finally fired on all cylinders and ended up second. We're more fit now than last season at this time, so we simply need championship performances at championship meets."
Women's Head Coach Judy Bogenschutz: "We've had some people really come around these past two weeks in practice and the team is excited to run this meet and beat some teams that have beaten us throughout the season. If everyone runs a solid race we could be as high as top three. There are about seven teams who are all pretty close right now. It will be a very tight race for one of those top three spots. Our goal is to put three in the top 15 and have our four and five in the top 25. That would be a huge boost for us going into the regional."
Racing for Results
For complete results, visit iuhoosiers.com
Phone: 812.855.9399 or Fax: 812.855.9401
For questions or comments, please contact Brooke Nash at firstname.lastname@example.org
2001: Men Following the Blueprint
For the Indiana men's cross country team, currently ranked No. 23 in the nation, this season seems a blueprint from the 2000 season. The Hoosiers entered the 2000 Big Ten Championship ranked No. 24 in the nation with three Big Ten teams ranked above them (Wisconsin (6), Michigan State (16), and Penn State (18)). The men finished second edging out Penn State by one point, their best finish in 20 years and the best two-year turnaround by a Big Ten team since 1969. Head coach Robert Chapman earned Big Ten Coach of the Year honors for the team's accomplishment to become the only head men's cross country coach in IU history to do so.
This season, the men are topped in the national polls by conference rivals Wisconsin (4), Michigan (12), and Michigan State (18). Could Indiana pull off an even greater upset in 2001 to knock off the back-to-back champion Badgers for the title?
If IU men's cross country wins....
Indiana will tie for second with Michigan State for most conference team titles won with 14 and surpass every other Big Ten team other than Wisconsin for most team titles by at least four.
Indiana will complete the best three-year turnaround by any Big Ten team ever in conference history.
Pre-NCAA Performance a Promise
On Oct. 13, Indiana placed 11th among a national caliber field of 36 teams at the Pre-NCAA Championship in Greenville, S.C. Indiana ranked third among the top 11 teams in the Pre-NCAA gold race in terms of the spread between their first through fifth man (1. Colorado-23 man spread, 3. Air Force-24 man spread, 11. Indiana-36 man spread). The Big Ten Championship is the smallest race of the year for IU, averaging 83 athletes in the past two seasons. Although they are missing the front runner they had last season in Aaron Gillen, who finished third at last season's Big Ten meet, their ability to pack tightly makes them dangerous and one of their top men this season, junior Chad Andrews, was 11th at the 2000 Big Ten Championship. Their ability to feed off one another makes them a strong contender for the 2001 title.
Hoosiers in History
Indiana cross country ranks highly in the Big Ten records book. On the men's side, Indiana ranks third behind Wisconsin and Michigan State for most team titles with 13. The Hoosiers rank second, however, behind the Badgers for most individual title winners with 16. Indiana ties for second with Michigan State for consecutive team titles won with six. Indiana ties with Michigan for most Athlete of the Year awards with five. Furthermore, the Hoosiers are one of only three schools along with Illinois and Michigan, to have an athlete win four individual Big Ten titles.
On the women's side, Indiana ranks third behind Wisconsin and Michigan in both team and individual Big Ten titles won with two team and three individual crowns. Only Indiana and Wisconsin have had an individual athlete win three individual conference crowns and former Hoosier Michelle Dekkers continues to hold the Big Ten Championship best times record of 16:18.9 for 5K, which she ran to claim her second individual title. Indiana ties with Wisconsin for second for most Athlete of the Year awards with three.
The Big Ten Conference is tough when it comes to the sport of cross country. Four teams on the men's side are ranked in the top 25 in the country, including Indiana, with Wisconsin making the top five. On the women's side, two teams are ranked nationally, but not below 14th. Wisconsin sits in that slot with the Michigan State Spartans predicted sixth in the country.
At the 2000 Big Ten Championship, the Indiana men's team placed all of their athletes within the top 30 with the first four in the top 20:
1. Wisconsin-45 [1,2,9,14,19]
2. Indiana-81 [3,11,17,20,30]
3. Penn State-82 [5,12,18,23,24]
4. Michigan State-103 [6,15,16,31,35]
5. Minnesota-133 [8,21,25,34,45]
6. Ohio State-145 [7,13,28,47,50]
7. Michigan-170 [4,29,33,51,53]
8. Iowa-203 [27,32,41,48,55]
9. Purdue-219 [10,44,46,56,63]
10. Illinois-239 [36,43,49,52,59]
The Indiana women's team placed seventh with All-Big Ten athlete Allyson Hammond leading the pack:
1. Wisconsin-34 [1,2,8,10,13]
2. Michigan -89 [11,16,17,20,25]
3. Minnesota-99 [6,9,22,24,38]
4. Illinois-116 [7,15,29,31,34]
5. Northwestern-135 [12,14,21,39,49]
6. Michigan State-147 [4,19,23,43,58]
7. Indiana-151 [5,32,33,40,41]
8. Penn State-201 [3,46,47,48,57]
9. Purdue-215 [18,26,44,63,64]
10. Ohio State-240 [28,37,42,61,72]
11. Iowa-282 [27,50,66,68,71]
Competitors for the men include Jr. Chad Andrews, Fr. Tom Burns, Fr. Kurtis George, So. Bart Phariss, Jr. Chris Powers, So. Nathan Purcell, Sr. Josh Trisler, So. Jeff Zeha, So. Matt Sweetman, or So. Rob DeWitte.
Competitors for the women include Jr. Amanda Bell, Jr. Allyson Hammond, So. Becky Obrecht, Fr. Mindy Peterson, So. Audrey Giesler, So. Lauren Weddell, Fr. Amber Miller, Jr. Whitney Bevins, and Fr. Jaime Higginbotham.
The men's top seven out of 83 of the top athletes in the conference at the 2000 Big Ten Championship 8K was as follows. Returners are bolded:
1. Aaron Gillen-3rd-24:11
2. Chad Andrews-11th-24:39
3. Chris Powers-17th-24:51
4. Bart Phariss-20th-24:55
5. Chris Ekman-30th-25:09
6. Jeff Zeha-37th-25:21
7. Nathan Purcell-38th-25:23
The women's top seven out of 93 of the top athletes in the conference at the 2000 Big Ten Championship 5K was as follows. Returners are bolded:
1. Allyson Hammond-5th-17:32
2. Amanda Bell-32nd-18:16
3. Lauren Weddell-33rd-18:16
4. Stephanie Magley-40th-18:19 *Redshirted
5. Erin Womble-41st-18:21
6. Audrey Giesler-52nd-18:48
7. Heidi Crowley-53rd-18:48
What a Difference a Year Makes
In comparing Big Ten placing as well as distance times, the Hoosiers have made huge strides as the seasons roll by. The fact that for only two Hoosiers on the men's side and only three on the women's side will the 2001 conference championship be a thrice fought battle displays the youth on each squad:
Jr. Chad Andrews: 1999 (34/82-26:34.9)/2000 (11/83-24:39)
Jr. Chris Powers: 1999 (40/82-26:44.2)/2000 (17/83-24:51)
Jr. Allyson Hammond: 1999 (29/94-18:06.6/2000 (5/93-17:32)
Sr. Erin Womble: 1998 (57/89-18:52.6)/1999 (59/89-18:52.2)/2000 (41/93-18:21)
It's Gotta Be the Coaches
While they won't be the ones to say it, the efforts of fourth year coaches Judy Bogenschutz and Dr. Robert Chapman are the primary factor in Indiana cross country making a remarkable turnaround in just three seasons. From 1998 to 2000, Bogenschutz has brought the women's team from ninth to seventh in the conference and from 20th to fourth in the region. In the same span of time, Chapman has raised the men's team from 10th to second in the conference and from not competing, to ninth, to fourth in the region.
In two scored meets of the 2001 season that Indiana has competed in, the Roy Griak Invitational and the Notre Dame Invitational, Indiana's top six athletes have been natives of Indiana. Only in the most recent meet, the Pre-NCAA Championship, did sophomore Nathan Purcell, a native of Salem, Ill., break the running tradition to be the only athlete out of the top six not from the Hoosier homeland. Yet, his teammates will gladly take his efforts as Purcell was IU's fifth man at the Pre-NCAA Meet.
Obrecht Breaks Out
Sophomore Becky Obrecht is a small town girl making a big impact for IU. Obrecht, a native of Fortville, Ind., says she came to IU to meet new people, encounter different views, and gain new experiences. Her experiences in cross country have only continued to get better with time. As a freshman last season, Obrecht proved her worth when she scored for IU at the Great Lakes Regional despite the race being the first 6K and only the third race of her career. This season, Obrecht is no longer trailing the pack. Rather, she has siezed the reigns and has led IU in three of the four scored meets of the 2001 season thus far.
Illini Fight in IU
Although Indiana stresses the team Indiana concept, three Illinois natives have brought their Fighting Illini spirit to the IU cross country programs. On the women's side, sophomore Audrey Giesler of Downers Grove, Ill. won Indiana's debut meet and has scored in the top five for the Hoosiers in every meet since while freshman Mindy Peterson of Milan, Ill. has never placed below third for IU in any scored meet of the 2001 season. Meanwhile, on the men's side, sophomore Nathan Purcell of Salem, Ill. was IU's fourth man at the 2000 NCAA Championship despite being set back in training the summer prior. Purcell scored for IU for the first time this season at the recent Pre-NCAA Championship.
No Benchwarmers Despite Blows
Despite the fact that the Indiana women's cross country team lost three of their top athletes prior to the 2001 season to injury, Indiana's youth have been unafraid to rise to the challenge. In the five meets of the 2001 season, four of the top five athletes have been of sophomore status or below on four occasions (Indiana Open, Roy Griak, Notre Dame, and Pre-NCAAs). It was only at the Illini Invitational that juniors Amanda Bell and Whitney Bevins scored for IU.
All-Big Ten Athletes Battling Back
Despite their histories as two of Indiana's top athletes, juniors Allyson Hammond and Amanda Bell, who were IU's first female athletes to earn All-Big Ten honors during their career since 1993, suffered injury-riddled track seasons and have been fighting their way back to form ever since. Yet, the two are making steady progress. Hammond, was fifth at the 2000 Big Ten Championship and went on to place 48th at the NCAA Championship, has run in three meets thus far in the 2001 season (Illini Invitational, Roy Griak, and Notre Dame). In that time period her placing amidst her team has climbed from 10th, to ninth, to seventh, respectively. Bell, who was sixth at the 1999 Big Ten Championship, has run in four meets thus far in the 2001 season (Illini Invitational, Roy Griak, Notre Dame, and Pre-NCAAs) and is making a respective recovery herself moving sequentially from eighth, to fourth, the third, to second for her team.
Peterson a Top Prep
Freshman Mindy Peterson, a two-time state cross country champion and three-time state track champion from Illinois, has never placed below third for the Hoosiers this season. In three of the five meets this season, she has been the second Hoosier to cross the line while at the Roy Griak Invitationl, the first 6K of her career, she was first for Indiana.
Junior Chad Andrews, who was a second team All-Big Ten selection last season for his 11th place conference finish, has made a steady progression to the top of the pack during his career. As a freshman in 1999, Andrews placed as high as third for IU on two occasions. He would follow up in 2000 as a sophomore to place second for IU on three occasions. So far during the 2001 season, he has been the first Hoosier to cross the line in the last two meets (Notre Dame and Pre-NCAAs). Furthermore, Andrews has established a trend of coming through for the Hoosiers when it counts most. The two occasions in 1999 in which Andrews was third for IU were the Big Ten Championship and Great Lakes Regional. In 2000, it was the same two meets in which Andrews would take second for IU with the addition of the NCAA Championship. Andrews has improved his Big Ten 8K time by 1:55 (1999-26:34.9/2000-24:39).
Freshman Tom Burns of Hammond, Ind. is a true team player. Burns has run in two of the three scored meets of the 2001 season (Roy Griak and Notre Dame) and has finished third for the Hoosiers on both occasions. Following the Notre Dame Invitational, Burns said of his developing role for IU, "I don't see myself as the third man. I see myself as being in pretty good shape and as the season rolls on and everyone starts coming along, I could be fifth, sixth, or even seventh. I'm just going out there and getting the job done and doing my part for the team in this first part of the season and gaining experience for later on."
Powers Pushing the Pack
Junior Chris Powers, like fellow junior Chad Andrews, has developed into a consistent force for IU during his career. In the six scored meets of the 2000 season, Powers never finished below third for IU and placing third was only on three occasions. Powers made a big jump for the Hoosiers at the recent Pre-NCAA Championship. Leading up to the meet, Powers had placed fourth for IU at both the Roy Griak and Notre Dame Invitationals. At the Pre-NCAA Meet, however, Powers pushed the envelope to take second for his team and 57th out of 242 of top Division I athletes. At the 2000 Big Ten Championship, Powers placed 17th out of 83 athletes. Additionally, he has improved his Big Ten 8K time by 1:53 (1999-26:44.2/2000-24:51).
Phariss Puts Up a Fight
Sophomore Bart Phariss was Indiana's third man at the 2000 Big Ten Championship, placing 17th overall. In 2001, Phariss again has come to be counted upon by his teammates and he rarely disappoints. Out of 11 competitions, there has only been one meet in Phariss' career in which he has not scored for the Hoosiers. So far in the 2001 season, Phariss has not placed below third for his team. In the meet in which he finished first for IU (2001 Roy Griak Invitational), he improved by 51 seconds at the 8K level compared to last season on the Minnesota course (2000-25:39/2001-24:48).
Zeha Zips By
Sophomore Jeff Zeha was IU's sixth man at the 2000 Big Ten Championship. However, he scored for IU at both the Great Lakes Regional and the NCAA Championship and has multiple high level competitions under his belt including the 2000 NCAA Championship, the World Cross Country Trials, and the U.S. Track and Field Junior Nationals. Zeha will be counted upon to come through at the 2001 conference championship and has positioned himself for the task, scoring in the past two meets for the Hoosiers. Zeha was IU's fifth man at Notre Dame and the fourth man at the Pre-NCAA Championship.
It's in the Blood
Freshman Kurtis George, cousin to junior Chad Andrews, was Indiana's sixth man at both the Roy Griak and Notre Dame Invitationals. Head coach Robert Chapman says of George, "Kurtis made some great progress in his redshirt year last year and I believe he will be a major factor for our team this fall."
Trisler in the Top
Sr. Josh Trisler, a transfer who made his way to IU from DePauw and IUPUI, is determined to make the most of his final season with the Hoosiers and has competed in all three of the scored meets of the 2001 season, finishing fifth for IU at the Roy Griak Invitational.
Sophomore Rob DeWitte has improved tremendously coming off of his redshirt freshman year. In the unscored home debut meet this season, DeWitte shaved 39 seconds off of his previous 7K time on IU's course (2001-23:27.50/2000-24:06.38). Furthermore, DeWitte ran in the first scored meet of his career this season at Notre Dame where he was the ninth man for IU and placed 89th out of a 128-man field with the best 8K time of his career (26:14).
Sophomore Matt Sweetman tallied five competitions as a freshman last season and improved his 8K time by 15 seconds during the course of the 2000 season. Head coach Robert Chapman says of Sweetman, "Matt's performances so far may just be the biggest surprise on our team. It wouldn't surprise me to see Matt as a top 25 Big Ten threat as a sophomore competitor." Sweetman is coming closer to his goal, placing ninth for the Hoosiers at the 2001 Roy Griak Invitational.
2001 Mondo Men's National Poll 10/16
5. Notre Dame
6. N.C. State
9. N. Arizona
9. Air Force
11. UC-Santa Barbara
15. E. Michigan
18. Michigan State
19. Arizona State
21. Wake Forest
22. Colorado State
25. Utah State
2001 Finish Lynx Women's National Poll 10/15
4. N.C. State
4. Boston College
6. Michigan State
7. Arizona State
9. N. Carolina
17. N. Arizona
18. Colorado State
19. James Madison
2001 Women's Great Lakes Region Poll 10/21
1. Michigan State
4. Notre Dame
8. Kent State
9. Ball State
10. Miami (Ohio)
2001 USCCCA Men's Great Lakes Region Poll 10/16
1. Notre Dame
4. Eastern Michigan
5. Michigan State
8. Miami (Ohio)
9. Central Michigan