Saturday, August 3, 2013

NCAA XC Top 31 Countdown: Men's #20- Georgetown

Editor's note: For the next month, The Wood Report will be counting down projected team finishes in this year's NCAA Cross Country Championships in Terre Haute, IN.

Head Coach: Patrick Henner (14th Season)
2012 National Finish- 25th

Key Returners from 2012
  • Andrew Springer (Sr., 7:53 Open 3k, 13:46 5k, 29:28 10k)
  • Miles Schoedler (Jr., 3:47 1500m, 14:32 5k)
  • Darren Fahy (So., 8:15 Open 3k, 9:06 3k Steeple (US Jrs))
  • Ben Furcht (Sr., 8:12 Open 3k, 14:17 5k, 30:27 10k)
  • Max Darrah (Jr., 8:13 Open 3k, 8:43 3k Steeple)
  • Dylan Sorenson (Sr., 3:47 1500m, 8:13 Open 3k, 8:50 3k Steeple)
  • John Murray (Jr., 8:10 Open 3k, 14:15 5k)
Impact Recruits/Transfers
  • Jonathan Green (Fr., 2 X FL Finalist, 9:21 2 Mile)
  • Connor Sheryak (Fr., 15:05 5k (5th NBIN 5k), 58th NXN Nats '12) 
  • Amos Bartelsmeyer (Fr., 4:11 1600m, 9:15 3200m, MO State XC Champ '12)
  • Ahmed Bile (Redshirt Frosh., 4:04 Mile, 2 X FL Finalist: 12th in '11, 14th in '12) 

Season Preview

Depth is name of the game today. The reigning Mid-Atlantic Regional champions of 2012 return four of the their top seven and add a few surprises from track and some solid freshman to their 25th place national finish. Coach Patrick Henner has seemingly turned Georgetown into another "Steeple U" with the four very quality steeplers returning for him in 2013. Along with an almost certain All-American, things are looking good for the Hoyas this year. 

Andrew Springer is the returning leader and star of this team. There is no doubt that he is All-American quality, and as long as he is healthy and actually runs in Terre Haute, he should find himself in the top 40. Springer is coming off of a very good outdoor track season where he qualified for nationals in both the 5000m and 10000m and placed 15th and 13th, respectively. Andrew has surprisingly good range with a 1500m PR of 3:41 and 10000m PR of 29:28. He is a pure cross country runner that will be more suited for the longer stuff as the season goes on and will be in the mix for regional individual honors and nationals as well.

Miles Schoedler was a very good pack runner for the Hoyas in 2012 where he consistently was their no. 3-4. Schoedler is a guy with good leg speed (3:47 1500m) that always pays off the last 400m where he blows by ten runners and gets that many less points. John Murray and Ben Furcht are very experienced xc runners that are also very good pack runners. These athletes know what it takes to make the National meet and they will provide solid veteran leadership. 

The rest of the squad that returns is filled out by Steeplers. The 3k Steeple and Cross Country have not always been a consistent transition of excellence. There have been so many national champions in the steeple that have never cracked the top 100 at cross nationals. Georgetown does have three 8:50 and better 3k Steeplers and a former U.S. Junior Champion (Fahy).

Fahy proved his chops in xc in 2012 and will be counted on to be a top five runner. If Darrah and Sorenson (both nationals qualifiers in the steeple) can learn from Fahy, this is a deep, deep Georgetown team. 

A good recruiting class does not hurt either. Ahmed Bile redshirted 2012 and has great xc experience having been top 15 back to back years at Foot Locker Finals. After a year of college experience, this should translate to a good freshman year for him. 

Another two-time Foot Locker Finalist is Jonathan Green who could be the only true freshman that could crack the top seven. This team is so deep that they could go all year without suiting a single freshman up. 

With Syracuse and Notre Dame out of the Big East, the conference championship is there for them to win if they can hold off Villanova. Georgetown has a lot of potential in 2013. If Springer can be the very low-stick that they need and their steeplers and veterans pull through, they could crack the top 15 at nationals for the first time since in five years. 

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