- April 23, 2012 at 7:27 pm #12482
Maybe some Wisconsinites as well as NCAA Division III fans will be interested, also.
Tim Nelson has been tearing it up for UW-Stout recently. After finishing 4th at Nationals in cross country, he stepped up his game even further during track season. Indoors, at Nationals, he ran away from a 5000 meter field that included three runners who earlier in the season added themselves to the Division III all-time top 10 list to win and add himself to that all time list with a time of 14:11.80. Now, 4 of the 10 fastest Division III runners of all time came from this season and he dominated the only race with all 4 in it. He led almost the whole race before simply running away with 6 laps to go. It was a stunning display of dominance against possibly the fastest Division III field ever assembled. I believe it was also Stout's first NCAA championship in a distance running event.
Outdoors, he is not letting up. He began the season by traveling to Illinois for a meet at North Central College. After, as his coach said, he had a couple slow miles in the middle, he took off for the win in 29:35.78. At the time, this made him the 9th fastest Division III 10,000 meter runner of all time (another runner pushed him down to 10th fastest all time since). This past weekend, at the Mt. SAC Relays, he mixed it up with Division I and II runners as well as open runners and finished 6th in his heat in 13:57.02. This makes him the 4th fastest Division III runner all time and, ironically, knocks Stout alum Jeff Wachter off the all time top 10.
Tim has some serious competition coming up when Nationals rolls around. As I mentioned, someone already has run faster than him in the 10,000 and this past weekend another runner became the 5th Division III runner to ever dip under 14 minutes in the outdoor 5000 by going 13:59. What he's doing, though, is simply stunning. Just a few years ago, at Stout's alumni cross country meet, he was a freshman running with this washed up has been/never was named Ryan Hill. Now, he's making school history in a big way and has the potential, if he wishes, to get interest from professional training groups after he graduates. First things first, though. He has a track season to finish and one more cross country season to run. I can't wait to see what additional pages of Stout and Division III history he will write.
The amazing thing, though, is that Tim is only part of the story at Stout. This past weekend, Mitch Easker (a junior) became just the 8th Stout runner to break 15 in the 5000, Justus Bibeau ran 15:16 and Paul Van Grinsven (just a sophomore) ran 15:19. Combined with Tim, that may be the most 5000 meter depth Stout has ever shown in a single weekend.
On the women's side, there aren't runners showing up on national honor rolls yet but it might not be long at the rate some are improving. Sophomore Josie Petersson set a 20 second 5000 meter PR this past weekend – in the second half of her first ever 10,000 meter run.
As an alum, I'm thrilled to see the big steps forward Stout's distance runners have been making recently. No surprise, it all boils down to stability and a good leader at the head coaching position. Every time Stout has seen distance runners compete at the highest level (70s/early 80s, late 90s and again now) it has coincided with a smart coach who has been at the school for some time (Lou Klitzke, Chris Hall and now Matt Schauf). Coach Schauf deserves a lot of credit for both recruiting runners with a lot of potential and developing their potential into the great results the program is seeing now. Coach Schauf is pretty young for a head collegiate coach with experience but he is also committed to Stout. I hope he stays at Stout for the long term and continues to lift the distance runners to greater heights. It's a very exciting time to be a member of the Stout distance running family. I hope this is just the beginning of an extended period of success for the program.
Division III all time indoor track and field honor roll
Division III all time outdoor track and field honor roll
Running Times recap of Mt. SAC Relays
Video of Tim's 5000 at Mt. SAC, Tim gets mentioned by the Flotrack crew quite a bit – they seemed impressed by him
- May 25, 2012 at 2:15 pm #32397
If I can continue the promotion of my alma mater, Tim is amazing. One race down at Nationals, one national championship in the bag. One race to go. It's not going to be easy but, based on what we've seen from him through this T&F season, it would seem unwise to count him out.
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