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...

Friday, July 31, 2015

This Steeplechaser Started Early, And This Middle Distance Star Is Still Working Out!

Apparently, starting early helps!  I stole this pic from Bridget Franek's FB.  She's running in a street mile in Pittsburgh this weekend. I never started until I was 15... (bangs head on desk...)

And here's a pic I took of Coach Groves the last time we talked!

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

I Swear I Didn't Want To Reveal Her Age! She's Just A Kid

The USATF Masters Track and Field Championships were last weekend in Jacksonville.  Our very own multiple Longest Drive Champion Beth Shisler was there in her best sport!

Stephen and Beth Shisler

She finished 4th in the 50-54 age group in both races and set PRs in both the 400M and 200M.

Beth Shisler
51 - Athena Track Club

Beth Shisler
51 - Athena Track Club

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Five For One?

I had the opportunity to watch the Cole Hamels masterpiece no-hitter yesterday in what may be his last game as a Phillie.  It's always fun to see a no-hitter.  Has anyone been in-house for a MLB no-hitter? 

I also thought about the coming trade.  Will it resemble the old Von Hayes Five-For-One-Deal in the 80's?

  • Von Hayes from the Indians to the Phillies
  • Jay Baller from the Phillies to the Indians
  • Julio Franco from the Phillies to the Indians
  • Manny Trillo from the Phillies to the Indians
  • George Vukovich from the Phillies to the Indians
  • Jerry Willard from the Phillies to the Indians
The only other recent 5-For-1 deal recently I know of was the Guantanamo terrorist trade for  Bowe Bergdahl.

  • Bowe Bergdahl from the Taliban to America
  • Abdula Haq Wasiq from Guantanamo to the Taliban
  • Mullah Norullah Noori from Guantanamo to the Taliban
  • Mullah Mohammad Fazl from Guantanamo to th Taliban
  • Mullah Khairullah Khairkhwa from Guantanamo to the Taliban
  • Mohanmmad Nabi Omari from Guantanamo to the Taliban

Saturday, July 25, 2015

An Anniversary And Trip Back In Time

"A date which will live in infamy!"
~Judy Lynn Weaver '87 (mgr.)

My plea for submissions from my horde of faithful readers again bore fruit. (Keep them coming!) Judy Lynn Weaver sent me this great article from the Summer Collegian in 1968.  That's almost one year before the moon landings. (Yes, they really did go to the moon with a computer the equivalent of the original Palm Pilot!)  It's also notable that racial tensions were about the same as they are today on page 1 of the Collegian.  That makes me extremely sad.

Turns out that Coach Groves was hired as the new PSU Track and Cross Country Coach on 7/24/1968 Coach John Lucas stepped down to devote full-time to his professorship duties.  Word of the hire was reported exactly 47 years ago today (with the appropriate conversions from Rec Hall's square track to a banked Mondo-surfaced 200 meter indoor facility.  Or was that from Imperial to Metric?)  Thanks Judy Lynn!

Friday, July 24, 2015

A Century For Giving

Ron Moore will be upping the distance and running his first 100-Mile Race in the near future.  He has decided to make a positive impact and is seeking financial support for the Scott Hamilton CARES Foundation through his everydayhero page.

Please give what you can, as will I.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

It Isn't Fair To Practice For The Next Coach Groves Golf Tournament

And yet there are a bunch of you on the links this summer.  Greg Miller even went for broke at one of Golfing's Meccas, Pinehurst CCAnd he broke 100!

Che Arosemena once took The Golden Putter to Pinehurst, but I'm still waiting for the pictures!

Greg Miller surveys the course.

Payne Stewart.

I wonder what a hot dog costs here?
Greg relates hot dogs were $4.50!  compared to $0.75 at  Bushwood CC!

The Gallery on the 18th!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Darrell Hill Places Fourth at Pan-Am Games

1 558 21.69 PR
2 284 20.53 SB
3 109 20.24
4 715 20.10
5 718 19.88
Darrell Hill was in third place for most of the competition but wasn't able to better his second throw and slipped to 4th in the competition. It was certainly a fine year for Darrell. We look for many more fine throws in the future.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

This Gives "Going Down the Shore" An All New Meaning

George McWilliams saw the blog's bat signal go out yesterday for some submissions, and came through with flying colors.  He brings me this great report of a rather unique track meet (actually field meet!) held on the beach in Wildwood.  Hope the Portuguese-Man-o-Wars were all gone by then!  Thanks George.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Tyler's Response Is First Class

As I have said before, both athletes were ill served by the USATF organization.  Tyler will suffer from some detractors permanently over the incident, but I'm sure he will be able to handle it because I have seen how he handles other situations. 

As these types of incidents multiply, both members of the USATF and non-members must put the leadership's feet to the fire to improve the organization. Good luck to both athletes in the upcoming races.

Tyler McCandless Responds to Pan American Games Marathon Removal
BOULDER, CO (July 20, 2015) – In May 2015, Tyler McCandless was honored to be asked to join the Men’s Marathon team representing the USA at the Pan American Games in Toronto on July 25, 2015. USATF, the national governing body for running, nominated McCandless to the US Olympic Committee (USOC) that oversees the National team and on July 6 McCandless was included in USOC’s press release announcing the full team roster. After the official team announcement, Craig Leon stepped forward to state that he had a marathon performance which gave him preference over McCandless in the selection criteria and filed a grievance with the USOC against USATF. On July 10, USATF formally notified McCandless that they planned to resubmit their team nomination to USOC to remove McCandless from the team due to the oversight in their selection process. Having committed the late Spring and early Summer to training for the Games and rearranging his, and his family’s, schedules McCandless filed for arbitration to stay on the team.
After hearing arguments from all sides, the arbitrator characterized the situation as a disaster. In his decision, the arbitrator recognized USATF as “the sole cause of the extraordinary issues that gave rise to this dispute,” and instructed that USATF must pay for all of the arbitration costs. With the need for expedited action, the “interim operative decision” placed Leon on the team in place of McCandless, additional details will come with the documentation in the “fully reasoned award” which will be forthcoming.

McCandless elaborated on his feelings:
“It’s hard to describe how excited I was to believe I was to have the opportunity to represent the USA in international competition and to wear the USA singlet. Those reading my social media posts could see the excitement and I enjoyed the support and encouragement I received back from individuals and race organizations.”
“I never thought that accepting a nomination to the Pan Am Games would end in heartbreak. When selected to the Games, I deferred a full-time job offer by a month, pushed back my PhD dissertation defense by a month and dedicated nearly two months of intense training for the Pan Am Games Marathon – foregoing other racing opportunities as well. My mom even pushed back a necessary hip replacement surgery to see me compete in Toronto!”
“Beyond all that, I feel that my own NGB, USATF, misrepresented the truth in submissions to the arbitrator in what can only be characterized as a personal attack rather than an attempt for justice. Humiliated, heart-broken, and shattered are words to describe my feelings right now.
“Of course, I wish Craig Leon and all of Team USA the best at the Pan American Games and know that he and the team will wear the red, white and blue with pride. Although a career dream come true has now become a nightmare that I won’t be able to wake up from for some time, I will continue to dedicate myself to the sport I love.”

I Had Nothing For Today

I really couldn't come up with anything for a post today, and no one has sent me anything of interest in awhile (Hint, hint...).  So I went to the Intertubes again to steal a vacation photo from someone else.  I hope they don't mind.

Tim "Grizzly" Johnson and Dennis Pollow on top of Pike's Peak.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Exciting Times For Shot Put U

More than one person tweeted out "Clean World Record" after yesterday's Shot Put competition at the Diamond League Meet in Monaco.  Congrats to Joe Kovacs in surpassing the 74 foot barrier (74' 1/4")!  And Ryan Whiting is rounding into shape also.

And don't forget that Darrell Hill is finishing up his preparations for the Pan-Am Games.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Debbie Downer Is A Park Ranger Now

When Scott Jurek surpassed the Appalachian Trail unofficial record last week, he was greeted with a gaggle of other hikers and well-wishers, AND Ranger Debbie Downer.  He was handed 3 citations for :
  1. Littering (champagne struck the ground when the bottle was opened)
  2. Hiking with a large group (12 or more)
  3. Consuming alcohol (the rest of the champagne)
The company filming was also cited for filming within 500 feet of the highest point of Mt. Katahdin, which was not covered by the paid-for commercial license.

Baxter State Park is considering eliminating itself from the Appalachian Trail over the incident.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

More Phun With Physics From Tasmania

"The "Magnus" effect is just Bernoulli's principle which is just an integral of Euler which is just a form of Newton's 2nd law."

I knew about this, but it is still cool to see it demonstrated with such effect.  And I wonder if anyone in our Universe has ever seen Gordon Dam? (Are you listening Ryan Foster?) They also achieved the world record for long distance basketball shot success here!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Tyler McCandless Bumped From The Pan-Am Team

We earlier reported that Craig Leon had been overlooked for inclusion on the team with his marathon time and lack of paperwork.  Another unforced error on the USATF 's behalf.  Quite honestly, a bunch of us and a keg of beer could do a better job...

Tyler McCandless was named as the second marathoner despite Leon's better time.  Tyler accepted the invitation and structured his training and life around it.  Now, through arbitration, he has been replaced.  And he also has accumulated a lot of haters who are unaware of the entire story.  Only lawyers will win in the end, as always...

Craig has scant time to get ready, and Tyler is left with the loss of the ability to wear the USA Singlet. When will our National Organization be worthy of our dues and respect?

Old School Coaching Loses A Legend

I'm late to report the news that Roy Griak, long-time coach of the Minnesota Golden Gophers passed away last week at 91.  Even though Penn State was late to the Big Ten in Coach Groves' career, the two bonded well and generated mutual admiration during meetings and runs. I hear there are some great stories and I would really like to hear them!  RIP Roy.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

One That Got Away

Dick Geiger tipped me to this item today.  Thanks! We all knew about it, but the repetition of the apologies speaks volumes.  Myles would have made a great Nittany Lion.


She Never Ran A Single Step

With ultra-marathoner Scott Jurek's conquest of the Appalachian Trail's unofficial record through-hike this week, it should be noted that the previous holder of the record didn't run a single step.  She merely walked every day from 5:00AM to 9:00PM, and finished just 2 or 3 hours slower than the new record holder. Both Scott and Jennifer Pharr Davis get my double thumbs up anyway.

Scott Jurek holding Mt. Katahdin in his hand.
Jennifer Pharr Davis

Monday, July 13, 2015

More Physics For Sprinters: And A Trip Back In Time

Distance runners and throwers alike have probably never used starting blocks.  So what's the physics behind their use?  An unlikely answer comes from the Huffington Post.

And Michael Gross made it back to Happy Valley for the Arts Festival with his family.  He jumped in the Arts Festival 10-Miler, leaving with his second place age-group award.  The problem is, he won the division!  Oops.  Way to go Mike!

He also took his kids to the Rec Hall Track for some "elbow-slamming" laps!


Sunday, July 12, 2015

Some Flotrack Videos of Nittany Lions In Europe


Kovacs commanding in shot put

After losing out to Germany’s in-form David Storl at the IAAF Diamond League meeting in Lausanne on Thursday, shot put world leader Joe Kovacs bounced back quickly with a 21.22m (69 ', 7 1/4") fifth attempt in Madrid.
Watch more videos on Flotrack

Watch more videos on Flotrack

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Diamond League Update

The latest Diamond League Track and Field Meet was in Lausanne, CH (Switzerland), a place I have actually been!  Several Nittany Lions were there.

Bridget Franek was 10th in the 3000M SC in 9:40.53

Joe Kovacs was second in the Shot Put with 21.71M (71 feet, 2 3/4 inch)
Ryan Whiting was sixth in the Shot Put with 20.83M (68 feet, 1/8 inch)

Friday, July 10, 2015

Physicist Unravels Key Detail Of Crime: Long Due Physics Update

The iconic photo by Alfred Eisenstaedt is known by just about everyone.  It shows a Navy member kissing an unsuspecting woman in Times Square in celebration of VJ Day.  Although official word of the victory didn't come until 7:00PM, word had leaked out earlier and the party began.

In today's world, the man would possibly be taken in for rape.  This second angle of the same event gave Physicist Donald Olson the information he needed to deduce that the event occurred at 5:51PM. What would we do without Physicists?

And now that the CERN Facility is back up and running at increased power (and we all are still here!), we will be getting some new and strange Physics information soon.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

One Nittany Lion In And One Out Of The Pan-Am Games, All Because of Paperwork

In my profession paperwork has taken over as never before, even if it all mostly online now.  But it also has taken over a lot of the Track and Field World, apparently.

Tyler McCandless will be lacing his shoes up in the marathon at the Pan-Am Games in Canada.  He was selected as the #2 marathoner.  There is a big controversy over the selection as another runner ran faster.  Possibly, he failed to fill out the required paperwork ahead of time.  LetsRun.com isn't a good source for anyone looking for "The Truth" but here's a link anyway.

The other side of the same coin has Fawn Dorr excluded from running the 400M Hurdles despite being the #2 at the National Championships.  She forgot the paperwork...

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

I'm Always Going To Be Outdone By The Youngsters

My vacation in nearby Harpers Ferry was scenic and tranquil (miserable internet sees to that!), but leave it to our younger set to outdo my vacation in a big way. Here are my favorite vacation spots for running.

Tim Johnson, Owen Dawson and Kyle Dawson headed west to meet Dennis Pollow for a tour of the western states.  Here's some of their photos I have stolen from various sources.  I don't think they will mind.

Kyle Dawson, Owen Dawson and Tim Johnson. Apparently they have been running!

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

While I Was Away

Some of you may note by the relative lack of posting lately that I have been away for my annual vacation to West Virginia, the land of no internet.  Well, bad internet anyway.  I barely tried this year.  Here is some pics of my 2 dogs who went on the trip and got to hike the Appalachian Trail and the C&O Canal Trail.

Pooky checks out the cool Shenandoah River after a hike.

Harpers Ferry From Virginia.
Pooky and Spott after hiking 10 miles.
But others were even more active:

  1. Mark Fuller  was 9th in 16:31
  2. Scott Munro was 10th in 16:40
  3. Natalie Bower was 37th in 18:12
  4. Mark Hawkins was 65th in 19:22 (2nd in age group)
  5. Don Ziter was there too, but I can't find his results.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Have A Nice Trip, See You After The Fall

An American record in the 3000M Steeplechase despite falling at the last barrier!  Evan Jager is rather amazing.  8:00.43!  Do any of you have memories of a steeplechase accident?

"I can't believe how fast I was running."
-Evan Jager.

Only once in my life did I ever say that (to myself).  During a workout in my Freshman year, Coach Groves had us run a 3/4 mile "pick-up" which was to be near maximum.  This ended on the downhill stretch leading to the western entrance to Toftrees back when there wasn't much there except for Toftrees.  I remember, and noted a 3:03 3/4 mile time, as barked out by Coach himself. I don't care by how much he may have mismeasured, it was still the fastest I ever ran for that far. It was downhill, but that feeling of going that fast for so long was seared into my memory.  Never to be repeated, may I add!!

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Our 00 Agent Delivers The Goods Even With Numerous Obstacles

008, our insider at the USATF Championships delivered numerous photos despite being the target of nefarious forces, including illness and injury.  The delay in posting was secondary to my vacation in West Virginia, the internet-deprived paradise I visit yearly.  This year, I didn't even try to use the internet, driving my readership to the lows of 2008!  Welcome back readers!  And thanks to Kay Warfel, our 00 Agent for bringing us the slide show.

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