Sept. 20, 2013
MINNEAPOLIS – The Minnesota women’s track and field team began fall practice this week. The Gopher sprinters, jumpers, pole vaulters and throwers began team workouts while the distance crew enters the heart of cross country season.
"Right now it’s just kind of an observation period to try to figure out what we have, who we have, how our freshmen fit in with everybody and how our upperclassmen are leading," director of women’s track and field and cross country Matt Bingle said. "Obviously it’s very early. Everybody is working out together now because things are so general."
Bingle enters his third season as the director of women's track and field and cross country at the U. He has been a member of the Gopher coaching staff since 2003.
After holding team meetings and captains practices over the first couple weeks of the academic year, the Gophers are happy to move on to organized workouts. In addition to building a fitness base, fall practices are critical in the development of team chemistry.
"Building team chemistry is really important to me during this time of the year, along with trying to get them to believe that they can do more than they think they can," Bingle said. "It’s only week one, so I’m not trying to push as much, but each week is going to get a bit harder. We’ll try to challenge them more with hill work, stadium work and other workouts, as we try to get them going in the right direction."
The Gophers have almost four full months before opening the indoor track and field season with the Northwest Open at the Minnesota Fieldhouse on Saturday, January 18.
Freshhman Friday: Sam Baer
Get to know Gophers rookie Sam Baer, a distance runner from St. Louis Park, Minn.
Warm-Up Lap: Q&A with Kelli Schmidt
Get to know Gophers redshirt freshman Kelli Schmidt, a distance runner from Wilmette, Ill.
Freshman Friday: Tate Sweeney
Rookie Tate Sweeney shares how she first got into running, her goals for the season, and how she chose Minnesota.