Sept. 11, 2012
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) has selected the Minnesota men’s cross country team 17th overall in the nation with 149 total points, according to a release today by the organization. The Gophers were selected 18th in the USTFCCCA’s national preseason poll and are currently ranked third in the USTFCCCA Midwest Region.
The Gophers are coming off a fourth-place finish at the Oz Memorial where five men’s cross country runners combined for 90 team points at the Les Bolstad Golf Course in Falcon Heights, Minn. Redshirt freshman Alex Brend paced the Gophers with a 6th-place finish and a time of 19:23.40. Sophomore Blayne Dulian (12th, 19:40.61) and redshirt freshman Christian Skaret (14th, 19:47.25) also posted top-15 finishes for Minnesota.
Border rival Wisconsin sits atop the national rankings with 355 total points and nine of 12 first-place votes. Oklahoma State (347 total points, two first-place votes) and BYU (341 total points, one first-place vote) round out the top three. Including Minnesota and Wisconsin, the Big Ten boasts four nationally ranked teams as Indiana ranks 13th with 216 points and Michigan is tied at 20th with 149 points. Ohio State and Michigan State also received votes in this week’s poll.
Next up for Minnesota is the Autumn Classic on Friday, Sept. 14 in Provo, Utah. No. 3 BYU hosts Friday’s four-mile race while Utah Valley, Idaho State and San Bernardino Valley are all slated to compete.
Gophers Finish 19th at NCAAs
The Gophers totaled 464 points for the 10-kilometer course at E. P. “Tom” Sawyer State Park.
Zutz Honored by USATF Minnesota
The St. Francis, Minn., native was a First Team All-Big Ten and All-Region honoree this year.
Plasencia Earns USTFCCCA Honor
Steve Plasencia has been honored as the USTFCCCA Midwest Region Coach of the Year.