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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Snid Was Always in the Thick of Things!

The 1979 NCAA 5000 M Final was another highlight of the remarkable Henry Rono.  The prelims were the scene of his "sprint the straights, jog the curves" race, where he toyed with the entire field.  But Bob Snyder was there in the chase pack in the Final, pictured here. (Thanks to Frit Cooper for the assist!)

I've told the story before about my arrival at Happy Valley, where I beat Bob in the first several XC races and thought I was the Bee's Knees.  Bob was so private and quiet, I never knew he was injured at the time.  I still don't know what the injury was, but I soon found out that Bob was an All-American and I was a walk-on.

During those years of top 4 NCAA team finishes, Bob was always in the thick of it.  As a team, we were a very proud lot about the fact that all of us were from PA, NY, VA and OH. Bob was from McConnellsburg PA ("That's Burg you big dummy", whenever someone said McConnellsville). Working hard and having fun.  Truly great times.  I'm sure those older and younger than I also remember similar times in The Valley.  Which is sorta the whole point of the blog BTW!

Someone else sent me some photos of Snid at the 1979 Pittsburgh Invitational and the 1978 NCAA XC Finals.  I can't remember if Coach yelled at him for his un-tucked shirt. And let's get some input on who the other runners are.  Do any of you remember Allegheny! (where Paul Stemmer got his start.)


  1. In the first photo, over Snid's left shoulder is Gary Hofstetter who ran at Pittsburgh's North Allegeny HS, the other UNC guy is Ralph King. Further back in the red singlet and candy striper shorts is Thom Hunt!

    In the snow of Wisconsin, Snid battled it out with Rudy Chapa of Oregon and Tom Graves of Auburn. In the Pitt Stadium (1978) photos he's leading Malcom East (Allegheny CC) and Mel Boyd (Pitt). Notice he's wearing Adidas Spiders in all the track photos.

    2 time XC All-America, 3:42 1500 PR and 13:36 5K PR....other than that he was a chicken chest from McConnellsville!!! :)

  2. That's what I'm talking about! I knew about half of them.

  3. Adidas Spiders! These young bucks today have no clue how cool they were. Suede the color of vomit. Molded to your foot as soon as you got them wet on the XC course or Steeple Pit. (or rain at Pitt Stadium)

  4. In the Pitt Stadium photo, is that Tom Rapp running fourth? Who is the other PSU guy farther back?

  5. Yes, that is Tom Rapp. The other one is Campbell Lovett.


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