20th Annual Penn State Track and Field/XC Reunion

And SAVE THE DATE! The Executive Committee meeting of the Officers of the Group convened and chose the dates for the 2022 Reunion and Coach Groves Golf Tournament. This will be the 20th anniversary of the formulation of this whole shebang, and you better SAVE THE DATE!! So set aside May 13th and 14th, 2022. (Each year will alternate between May and August) We will be going all out for this event and you won't want to miss it. Adult beverages, camaraderie with old and new friends, mediocre golf, AND LIVE MUSIC FROM PROFESSIONALS! Stay tuned...

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Cheryl Spring (s) Into Top Ten in "Kallee Forn Ya" Also

Cheryl Spring ventured to the far coast also this past weekend, and like Tyler McCandless, came away with a PSU Top Ten performance.  Cheryl ran 34:31.75 to put herself in 7th all-time, right behind my contemporary Peggy Cleary.  The race saw the collegiate record fall to Iowa State's Lisa Koll in 31:18.07.

And entries for the Reunion Weekend and Golf Tourney are ahead of last year's record pace.  Representatives from all decades from the 60's on will be there.  The 50's remains a possibility!  Recent grads will be there in increased numbers. Women will be represented in record numbers also.  (Remember the new Kathy Award)  There may be a very special guest this year to honor Coach Groves and Greg Fredericks that everyone will enjoy meeting.  He may even golf with us.  I have scoured the globe (I'm not making that up!) to bring in a special guest each year for the past three years and all I could muster was Gary Black!  Maybe this year, I've struck gold.  Keep your fingers crossed; Coach will be floored to see him there.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Climbing Up The Web Site List!

Thanks to a big influx of readers inquiring about the upcoming Coach Harry Groves Golf Tourney and Reunion, Penn State Track and Field Alumni Golf has climbed up to the 99,000th most popular site in the US!  We are 599,000th in the world.  Our goal is to be in the top 100,000, so keep those hits coming.

Addendum!!!!  On Sunday we finally broke the mark.  We are finally in the top 100,000 in the US and 600,000 in the world!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Outdoor Season Begins! Lone Runner in Schwarzeneggar's Backyard

Despite the cancellation of the first home meet, The Jim Thorpe Invitational, the Outdoor Track and Field season began with a lone runner on the Left Coast.  Tyler McCandless braved the field at the Stanford Invitational in the 10,000 M.  Leading much of the race, and negative splitting, Tyler ended in 5th place with a time of 29:22.35, placing him 6th all-time on PSU's list, (just behind my teammate John Ziegler!).  Congrats Tyler!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Houston, We have a Problem....

The people ultimately in charge of our welfare are certainly not up to the task.  We all know this instinctively, yet we go along with their plans because we are way too busy leading our pedestrian lives.  Among conspiracy theories gaining more and more attention lately is the thought that we must prepare for an asteroid impact.  Government types will see this as an opportunity to raid our wallets yet again.  "All we need to do is blow the thing up with a nuclear weapon!"

But, those bastions of truth and knowledge, the Physicists,  point out the futility of such a scheme.   Again, I add, the truth won't prevent some governmental agency from taking the money from us anyway, I'm just pointing out that we are doomed like the dinosaurs before us when "the big one" hits.  As Everybody Loves Raymond's father once said about marriage, "Not a day goes by when I don't wish for that sweet meteor!"

This post was brought to us by our Official Physicist, Brian Boyer, somewhere in the bowels of Los Alamos.  Thanks for cheering up the troops, big guy!  (And will Brian be attempting to get his name on the Cup for a second time this year, thus earning himself a place of esteem on The Hall of Honor, coming soon to a post near you?)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Tentative Schedule for Reunion/Golf Outing

  • Friday Afternoon:  Practice Round with Steve Balkey and the All-Stars at Freestone Golf Course.  Details will be forthcoming on a later post.  www.Freestonegolf.com
  • Friday Evening:  "7 ish"  The Annual Reunion Evening  at Damon's Grill where we all compare waistlines, hairlines and lifelines!  There will be some special announcements, raffles and the ever-popular "picking of the foursomes".
  • Saturday Morning:  "9 ish"  The soon-to-be annual alumni run/jog/walk/crawl at the outdoor track.  Everyone can run/jog/walk/crawl with Olympians and All-Americans for at least 1/4 mile (400 meters!).  The speedy types can then break away for a real run while us slackers drink coffee or whatever.
  • Saturday Afternoon:  "Noon ish"  Spouses, family, friends and those not golfing can meet for the Climb up Mt. Nittany (it's easy, even little kids and tea-cup Yorkies can do it!) after lunch at the Hampton Inn.  Followed by ice cream at The Berkey Creamery.
  • Saturday Afternoon:  1:00PM  The Ninth Annual Coach Harry Groves Golf Tournament at The Elks Club Course.  All grades of golfers participate, from beginners to champions.  Don't be left out! Your chance to be immortalized on the Memorial Cup!
  • Saturday Evening:  "7 ish"  The Shisler Shindig and Awards Ceremony at Damon's Grill.  We will have special announcements and ceremonies again this evening.  You don't want to miss it.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

An Oaf of Office

My political career ended immediately after being elected Student Council President at Dover High School in 1976.  I had run on a whim, coaxed on by my nerdy, intelligent friends.  They all joined me in various positions on The Tea Party ticket, (no kidding!).  Our "punny" choice of title gave us a huge advantage over the competition.  We were joined in our effort by those in the school who opted for "recreational drugs" as a lifestyle choice and giggled over their promotion of the T(HC) Party.  The opposition never had a chance!

After the election results were announced, I was immediately called to the Vice-Principle's office for a lecture about the evils of drug use and a mandate to clean up the problem at our school.  To this day he still thinks I was a drug-addled youth even though to this day I have yet to imbibe.  (Current events make me never say never!)

As a political statement and educational exercise, here's how America used to work, at least in the white-bread, Gerry Mather's world most of us grew up in!  Feel free to disagree, I'll still like you and bug you to golf with us!

Friday, March 19, 2010

A Note From Us Old Curmudgeons

Artie Gilkes has finally entered the realm of blogging, possibly never to be the same again.  He will soon place prose here on the blog joining such immortals as Rob Whiteside, Clark Haley, and myself.  As the newly crowned  Director of Youth Development, I hope he can entice increasing numbers of recent graduates to our fold.  I'm hoping it can expand our Reunion and Golf Outing Universe in a big way.  The more, the merrier.

But please remember, us old guys will still continue to wear our pants too high, and we'll never quite understand Rap, texting and how to use the remote. We just won't.

We look forward to partnering with you to make Penn State Track and Field Alumni the most active and largest group of its kind in the world.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

I Want One / Please Donate to My Cause! / Physics We Can Use

They have promised a jet car since I started reading the great science fiction magazines in the 60's.  No one has delivered yet, and I blame both Bush and Obama! No partisan bickering when it comes to promises.  But this company at least has a suitable substitution.

The jet pack seen here has a range of about 30 miles, but will be restricted in the heights it can obtain with its 200 HP engine.  The laws are sketchy on this as it qualifies as an ultralight flying vehicle, so annoying your neighbors can be as easy as possible.   Almost anything goes with these things as the poor jogger on the beach found out yesterday when he was hit and killed by an ultralight landing in an emergency.  He never knew what hit him as he had his iPod on and never heard it gliding in on him.

But I want one, and any contributions made on my behalf for the $100,000 vehicle will entitle you to a flight on me!  I will even include a photo and lunch. 

Monday, March 15, 2010

1,000 Days of "Greatness" / Sisyphus Redux

First, we must define greatness way, way down!  Let's just say greatness is "slogging" at least one mile daily (even on a treadmill!) according to the United States Running Streak Association's guidelines for 1,000 straight days.  I finally achieved the glorious mark on Saturday and may even register myself in their annals.  Don't worry, I only have 40 years or so to go to make the top of the list!  Mark Covert of CA is at the top of the American list, and Ron Hill of Great Britain has him beat.  And none of them have anything on "The Raven", Robert Kraft of South Beach in Miami who has run the same 8 mile run every day at the same time of day since 1975!

I shall persevere in my quest to duplicate the efforts of the tragic Greek figure, Sisyphus, forever doomed to roll the boulder up the hill every day only to have it roll back down every night!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Indoor NCAA Championships Success

Penn State was well represented at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships this weekend.  The Men placed 14th overall and the Women placed 13th.

  1. Joe Kovacs, 3rd in the Shot Put   61' 7"
  2. Blake Eaton, 8th in the Shot Put   60' 4.5"
  3. Shavon Greaves, 3rd in the 200 M  23.11 (semi)  23.17 (finals)
  4. Bridget Franek,  4th in the 5000 M  15:58.02,  7th in the 3000 M  9:12.62
  5. Fawn Dorr, 5th in the 400 M  52.58
  6. Caitlin DeFusco,  17th in the 200 M
  7. Lionel Williams,  11th  800 M  1:50.80
  8. Casimir Loxsom  15th  800 M  1:53.99
  9. Women 4 X 400 M, 9th (DeFusco, Dorr, Greaves, Doris Anyanwu)  3:35.39
  10. Ryan Foster,  3rd in the 800 M, 1:48.79
  11. Owen Dawson, 8th in the 800 M  1:49.59

2 to Finals for 800 U! / Goal: "Beat People" And 400 M Top Time!

800 U placed two people in the 800 M Finals on Saturday at the preliminary round of the NCAA Indoor ChampionshipsRyan Foster and Owen Dawson moved on to the 8 man Finale.In a great Flo Track interview, Owen was asked for his goal for the race and replied, "Beat people!"  which, to me, was as good an answer as I've heard in quite a while.

Track and Field Videos on Flotrack

And Fawn Dorr moves on to the 400M Finals with the fastest preliminary time (and a PR!)  And we find out she started as a middle distance runner! More Flo Track Goodness.   (I've never heard of a runner moving down in distance as profoundly as she has.)  Maybe I missed my calling. Although my :54 best 400 M argues otherwise!

Track and Field Videos on Flotrack

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

PSU is 800 U (Again)

Finalists for the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships were announced yesterday.  Here's the list of entrants qualified for the mens 800 M:

1  Andrew Wheating         SR Oregon              1:46.36D
  2 Ryan Foster JR Penn State  1:47.32                    1:47.32D
  3  Elijah Greer          FR Oregon              1:47.33D
  4  Zach Mellon           FR Wisconsin           1:47.45D
  5 Owen Dawson JR Penn State  1:47.77                    1:47.77D
  6  Richard Jones         JR LSU                 1:47.78D
  7  Sharif Webb            JR Kentucky            1:47.86D
  8 Casimir Loxsom FR Penn State 1:47.98                    1:47.98D
  9  James Gilreath         JR Baylor              1:48.00D
 10  Robby Andrews          FR Virginia            1:48.02D
 11  Mason McHenry          SO Arizona Stat        1:48.04D
 12  Chris Gowell           SR Baylor              1:48.23D
 13  Dan White              JR Ohio State          1:48.26D
 14 Lionel Williams JR Penn State 1:48.73                     1:48.53D
 15  Jack Howard            SR Notre Dame          1:48.60D
 16  Jamaal James           SR LSU                 1:48.73D

Monday, March 8, 2010

Gold is a Hedge Against Inflation, OR

The hordes of conspiracy theorists, Fox News viewers and Eeyore's of the world are hoarding gold as a hedge against the devaluation of currency in the coming financial meltdown. (Of course, they may be correct!)  But the rest of us view gold just as we always have, a precious metal for use in jewelry or expensive audio equipment that we no longer can afford.

So it's really cool to see a third class of citizen emerge with even more ignorance of the value of gold: The Physicists!  Scientists with too much time on their hands, too much grant money and a nuclear accelerator to boot have found a way to turn gold into a "negatively strange anti-hypernucleus lying below the plane of ordinary matter and antimatter."  I hope someone amongst our readers can enlighten me on this one!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Men are Usually Pigs, But....

NOT Penn State Track and Field Alumni Golfers! Our efforts to unite all PSU track alums have led to the introduction of a new award this year. All male attendees will be on their best behavior. The Kathy Award is named for PSU's former World Record Holder in the 5000 M, Kathy (Mills) Parker. The rotating prize will be awarded to the most-valuable woman golfer in the tournament to wear for the next year and return for the next lucky recipient. The blue and white pearl necklace is a beautiful piece, picked out by our very own Beth (Stever) Shisler. The Shisler's also offer the winner a luxury collection of their skin care products from Under Your Skin, (underyourskin.us.com).

Thursday, March 4, 2010

See, I Told You So!


No one is talking about The Swine Flu (H1N1) any more. Remember that Billions of $$ were set aside for the catastrophe that never came. I want my money back! The flu affected about 7% of the American population at its peak, which is in fact more than the average yearly flu. However, the virulence of the disease was markedly less than the normal flu. Deaths and hospitalizations were also down, and the normal yearly flu didn't appear at all. Thankfully, the vaccine, though way late due to bureaucratic incompetence, has proven very effective and caused very few adverse reactions.

NOTE: I did finally get the vaccine at the end of November, unlike this kid who self-inoculated earlier last year!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A Raffle to Replace "The Beast"?

Generous benefactors have struck again! This new Nike Sumo2, 11.5 degree, flex titanium shaft driver is up for grabs at the Awards dinner following the golf tourney. Retail value of this incredible club is $300! Special raffle tickets for the nearly skillet-sized slab of he-man golf bliss are only $10 a piece. Someone will walk away with a club which could allow him to reach the bottom of that lake with ease! Thanks to our esteemed benefactor for donating this extremely valuable item to our raffle. Take a chance, you'll make the real golfers jealous if you win!

Will Paul Mundy put in a few bills in an effort to replace "The Beast". And just how would "The Beast" react to the slight. "He" has been known to gnaw on 5-irons without provocation.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

PSU is Still 800 U

Ryan Foster defended his 800 M title at the Indoor Big Ten Mens Track and Field Championships in Minnesota on Sunday, keeping the interest up for a great 4 X 800 Relay at Penn this year. Congrats Ryan, keep it up. Tell the rest of the middle distance gang we're pulling for them too.

In other 800 M news, Steve Black will be appearing in another upcoming film, The Magenta Shamrock, playing one of the lead roles. He has recently appeared in the trailer for the remake of the "worst movie ever made" (Plan 9 from Outer Space). He has also recently appeared in an episode of The Bureau, many television commercials and the miniseries John Adams.

I took the whole family to the Women's Big Ten champs and all were impressed with Shavon Greaves, Fawn Dorr and Bridget Franek's efforts on the first day. My dad, a long-time track aficionado, was also impressed with the chess-like strategy involved in getting the victory. He was impressed with the entire coaching staff and the organization involved.
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