The Weekly Retro 5:08.11

May 8th, 2011 in Articles by 2 Comments

 2005 Big Ten X-C Championships

We’ll get back to the old-skewl play lists next week. This week’s entry is a fantastic photo taken at the 2005 Big Ten Cross Country Championships. Yes, 2005 isn’t really far enough back to be “retro,” but as soon as we received this shot we felt compelled to post it. Here’s why:

Wisconsin’s eighth runner in this race ran 24:34 for 5 miles. They put two guys under 24:00 and nearly swept the Big 10 championships. This is remarkable for a number of reasons. First, although we haven’t confirmed this with the UW sports information office yet, we’re guessing at least a portion of these guys were “built not bought” — even big name athletic programs usually only have three or four full-boat athletic scholarships to devote to cross country. Simon Bairu (#112) probably got a full ride, as likely did Chris Solinsky (#122) and Matt Withrow (#124), but our experience says at least a few of these guys were walk-ons that coach Jerry Schumacher (now with Nike) sculpted into thoroughbreds. If you have reason to believe we’re wrong, let us know in the comments.

Second, they nearly swept the field — with eight guys, not just the top three to lock up the meet. In the Big Ten! With some additional research we found this was a Big Ten scoring record.

Third, they went on to dominate the NCAAs that year with their top 5 guys running under 24:00 for 8k (en route to the 10k finish).

We don’t know the source of this photo, and if anyone does, please let us know so we can credit him/her accordingly. It’s a fanatstic shot of a team that had a brilliant season.

Author: FasterThanForty


Proud to be a UW-Madison alumni…

Bryan Huberty


[…] greatest team collegiate cross-country efforts ever recorded. For those of you too lazy to click here to see the original post, the Cliff’s Notes version is, Wisconsin took eight of the top nine […]

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