Representing the Maroon & Gold are Sean Donnelly (hammer throw), Mitch Hechsel (800 meters) and the 4x400 meter relay squad of Goaner Deng, Brad Neumann, Nate Roese and Jack Wellenstein.
Fifteen Gophers will be in NCAA regional action this weekend at Mike A. Myers Stadium in Austin, Texas.
Michigan State hosts this year's conference meet, May 15-17, in East Lansing.
The Gophers will compete at the Wisconsin Twilight and the UW-La Crosse Eagle Open on Friday.
Gian Ferretti returns as the Musco Twilight champion in the hammer throw.
A letterwinner in both cross country and track and field during his collegiate running career for the Golden Gophers, Griak earned his bachelor's degree in education from the U of M in 1949, adding his master's degree in 1950. Griak went on to teach at Nicolett High School and then at the Mankato Public Schools before he began teaching and coaching at St. Louis Park High School in 1953.
Griak, who was inducted into the prestigious Drake Relays Coaches' Hall of Fame in April of 1993, took over the reigns of the Minnesota program in 1963, replacing his old coach Jim Kelly.
He led the Golden Gophers to Big Ten cross country titles in 1964 and 1969. His 1968 cross country squad finished second at the Big Ten meet and placed fourth at the NCAA Championships. Griak added a Big Ten track and field title to his resume in 1968.
In addition to three Big Ten titles, his cross country squads produced three second-place and seven third-place finishes in league meets. Overall, he coached a total of 47 cross country and track and field All-Americans during his tenure, including three NCAA champions. His athletes collected 60 Big Ten Conference individual titles as well.
When Griak stepped off the track for the last time in 1996, Minnesota honored its legendary coach by naming the nation's largest annual cross country meet, formerly the Minnesota Invitational, after Griak. Griak then became the administrative assistant for cross country and track & field.
As the track and field and cross country administrative assistant, Griak takes care of scheduling, budget and equipment duties. He also plans special events and projects, fundraisers and acts as a liaison to the administration.
Griak resides in Plymouth, Minn.
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GopherSports.com caught up with Minnesota Director of Men’s Track & Field and Cross Country Steve Plasencia to talk about all things Maroon & Gold.
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