The Store Is Open Until 7/10/17

Kelly Sports Store
4 Jackets for all seasons, a matching rain pant and classic 100% pre-shrunk cotton tees just like olden times! Not those new-fangled smelly technical tees! If a code is needed, it is PSUTFAL

Thursday, October 29, 2015

The AIAW Archives Are Located Next To The Ministry Of Silly Walks

Apparently no one on the planet has the unconditional rights to the full results of the AIAW XC Championships  They do have some of the results archived at the Eastern Kentucky University Library, but I am barred from entering the State due to an unfortunate misunderstanding concerning a joke I once told.* (Just kidding Kentucky!)

I'll put off my search until after seeing John Cleese and Eric Idle Together Again for the First Time in Charm City. Thanks to Tom Shiffer for the heads up on that one.




*  Take your pick:

Q: Why do all the trees in Tennessee lean north? A: Kentucky Sucks

I'm not saying Kentucky Wildcats basketball players are dumb, but the coach is dressing six players for this Saturdays game. The rest will dress themselves.


Q: What is 20 feet long and has 5 teeth? A: The funnel cake line at the Kentucky state fair.

source: http://jokes4us.com/miscellaneousjokes/worldjokes/kentuckyjokes.html

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

We Never Had Such A Listing Of Runs As They Do Now

We had more wide-open territory to explore, but our routes were passed on from generation to generation of harriers by Code-Talkers speaking in a now extinct language.


What were some of your favorite routes?

Mine:
  1. Any Mountain Run... Colyer Lake, Bear Meadows, Ski-Mont, Harry's Valley Road...
  2. Pine Barrens
  3. Houserville-Lemont
  4. Houserville-Airport-Toftrees
  5. Any run ending up 4 Hills
    "Ski-Mont" now has a par 3 course...  Hmmm, Clark!

    Colyer Lake, from the A-Frame.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

I'm Still Searching For The AIAW Results! I Promise.

I have taken a little light-hearted abuse for seemingly forgetting that Penn State had a rich history in Womens Cross Country before the NCAA ever deigned to allow those with XX chromosomes to belong to their organization.

But that isn't the case at all!  I swear!  I just cannot find the full results of those Championships.  And I have tried enough to have come across some other cool stuff for future blog posts.

But first up is the team scores for the 1975 to 1980 years of the AIAW Championships: All top 5 finishes for the Blue and White!

1975

November 15, 1975, Ames, Ia              
Place  School                Results
=====  ====================  =======
   1.  IOWA STATE              96      AIAW
   2. PENN STATE     104     AIAW
   3.  MICHIGAN STATE         116      AIAW
   4.  OREGON                 143      AIAW
   5.  FLORIDA                162      AIAW
   6.  KANSAS STATE           177      AIAW
   7.  WISCONSIN              218      AIAW
   8.  COLORADO STATE         248      AIAW
   9.  MASSACHUSETTS          252      AIAW
  10.  KENTUCKY               264      AIAW
  11.  NW MISSOURI STATE      270      AIAW
  12.  MINNESOTA              280      AIAW
  13.  OHIO STATE             301      AIAW
  14.  WISCONSIN-LACROSSE     312      AIAW
  15.                         333      AIAW - Golden Valley Lutheran Junior College             
  16.  SOUTHERN ILLINOIS      369      AIAW
  17.  SW MISSOURI STATE      403      AIAW
  18.  MURRAY STATE           420      AIAW
  19.  AUGUSTANA COLLEGE      473      AIAW

1976

November 13, 1976, Madison, Wi           
Place  School                Results
=====  ====================  =======
   1.  IOWA STATE              62      AIAW
   2.  CAL ST-NORTHRIDGE      110      AIAW
   3.  WISCONSIN              177      AIAW
   4.  MICHIGAN STATE         181      AIAW
   5  PENN STATE    188      AIAW
   6.  UCLA                   269      AIAW
   7.  OREGON                 300      AIAW
   8.  COLORADO STATE         318      AIAW
   9.  NEW MEXICO             361      AIAW
  10.  KANSAS STATE           364      AIAW
  11.                         423      AIAW - Golden Valley Lutheran Junior College             
  12.  TEXAS                  504      AIAW
  13.  KENTUCKY               512      AIAW
  14.  MASSACHUSETTS          524      AIAW
  15.  NW MISSOURI STATE      534      AIAW
  16.  COLORADO               546      AIAW
  17.  SOUTHERN ILLINOIS      630      AIAW
  18.  WISCONSIN-LACROSSE     643      AIAW
  19.  TEXAS A&M              696      AIAW
  20.  EASTERN MICHIGAN       828      AIAW
  21.  BOWLING GREEN STATE    842      AIAW
  22.  SW MISSOURI STATE      858      AIAW
  23.  LUTHER COLLEGE        1000      AIAW

1977

November 19, 1977, Austin, Tx            
Place  School                Results
=====  ====================  =======
   1.  IOWA STATE              92      AIAW
   2 PENN STATE     116      AIAW
   3.  COLORADO               164      AIAW
   4.  WISCONSIN              172      AIAW
   5.  UCLA                   189      AIAW
   6.  EASTERN KENTUCKY       213      AIAW
   7.  OREGON                 218      AIAW
       TENNESSEE              218      AIAW
   9.  KANSAS STATE           239      AIAW
  10.  WESTERN ILLINOIS       272      AIAW
  11.  MARYLAND               290      AIAW
  12.  CAL ST-NORTHRIDGE      302      AIAW
       WASHINGTON             302      AIAW
  14.  MINNESOTA              346      AIAW
  15.  FLORIDA STATE          361      AIAW
  16.  TEXAS                  366      AIAW
  17.  MICHIGAN STATE         373      AIAW
  18.  STANFORD               421      AIAW
  19.  COLORADO STATE         427      AIAW
  20.  TEXAS A&M              448      AIAW
  21.  TEXAS WOMAN'S          520      AIAW
  22.  OREGON STATE           541      AIAW
  23.  AUBURN                 699      AIAW

1978

November 18, 1978, Denver, Co            
Place  School                Results
=====  ====================  =======
   1.  IOWA STATE             119      AIAW
   2.  NORTH CAROLINA STATE   142      AIAW
  3. PENN STATE     144     AIAW
   4.  COLORADO               145      AIAW
   5.  OREGON                 178      AIAW
   6.  WISCONSIN              187      AIAW
   7.  CALIFORNIA             197      AIAW
   8.  VIRGINIA               206      AIAW
   9.  MARYLAND               207      AIAW
  10.  MICHIGAN STATE         209      AIAW
  11.  CAL POLY-SLO           251      AIAW
  12.  PRINCETON              268      AIAW
  13.  KANSAS STATE           301      AIAW
  14.  KANSAS                 353      AIAW
  15.  FLORIDA STATE          392      AIAW
  16.  TEXAS                  393      AIAW
  17.                         425      AIAW - Spokane Community College                         
  18.  ALABAMA                433      AIAW
  19.  NEW MEXICO             502      AIAW
  20.  HOUSTON                504      AIAW
  21.  CAL ST-NORTHRIDGE      529      AIAW
  22.  COLORADO STATE         531      AIAW
  23.  WESTERN ILLINOIS       548      AIAW

1979

November 17, 1979, Tallahassee, Fl       
Place  School                Results
=====  ====================  =======
   1.  NORTH CAROLINA STATE   108      AIAW
   2.  OREGON                 120      AIAW
   3 PENN STATE     138      AIAW
   4.  WISCONSIN              142      AIAW
   5.  ARIZONA                181      AIAW
   6.  VIRGINIA               206      AIAW
   7.  CALIFORNIA             218      AIAW
   8.  MICHIGAN STATE         259      AIAW
   9.  IOWA STATE             290      AIAW
  10.  CAL POLY-SLO           294      AIAW
       UCLA                   294      AIAW
  12.  PRINCETON              303      AIAW
  13.  PURDUE                 309      AIAW
  14.  TENNESSEE              326      AIAW
  15.  MARYLAND               327      AIAW
  16.  MISSOURI               412      AIAW
  17.  KANSAS STATE           415      AIAW
  18.  COLORADO               430      AIAW
  19.  ALABAMA                452      AIAW
  20.  MASSACHUSETTS          455      AIAW
  21.  COLORADO STATE         479      AIAW
  22.  FLORIDA STATE          511      AIAW
  23.  OKLAHOMA               572      AIAW
  24.  TEXAS                  661      AIAW

1980

November 15, 1980, Seattle, Wa           
Place  School                Results
=====  ====================  =======
   1.  NORTH CAROLINA STATE    76      AIAW
   2.  ARIZONA                133      AIAW
   3.  VIRGINIA               140      AIAW
   4.PENN STATE     198      AIAW
   5.  OREGON                 251      AIAW
   6.  TENNESSEE              268      AIAW
   7.  UCLA                   270      AIAW
   8.  CALIFORNIA             281      AIAW
   9.  WISCONSIN              285      AIAW
  10.  IOWA                   299      AIAW
  11.  MICHIGAN STATE         304      AIAW
  12.  WASHINGTON             306      AIAW
  13.  TEXAS                  335      AIAW
       VERMONT                335      AIAW
  15.  OHIO STATE             354      AIAW
  16.  CAL POLY-SLO           365      AIAW
  17.  PURDUE                 379      AIAW
  18.  MISSOURI               407      AIAW
  19.  COLORADO               408      AIAW
  20.  HARVARD                415      AIAW
  21.  FLORIDA STATE          469      AIAW
  22.  IOWA STATE             486      AIAW
  23.  ALABAMA                539      AIAW
  24.  OKLAHOMA               578      AIAW
  25.  COLORADO STATE         617      AIAW
AIAW Great Kris Bankes. So what if it's a track pic?

Monday, October 26, 2015

Penn Relays Now Involved In The Bill Cosby Scandal

Not really.  But a new accuser has come to the fore with allegations that he rubbed up against her inappropriately while posing for a picture at Franklin Field during the Penn Relays, saying "Back that thing up..."






Sunday, October 25, 2015

Top Penn State (NCAA-Era) Womens Cross Country Runners Of All-Time


The Math Intern is redeemed and was finally allowed out of the basement when he finished the calculations for the Womens version of the All-Time Best list.

The criteria for the Womens list are similar to those used for the Men.  The main difference is that runners in the top-50 of any NCAA Championships were included. (Sorry Patty Murnane, 51st in 1978!)  This also excludes PSU greats like Kathy Mills, Peggy Cleary and Liz Berry who ran before the NCAA included women.  Hey, hey, hey! We don't want to exclude the AIAW Women.  We would love to merge those results into the NCAA results.  If anyone has access to full results from the AIAW years, please let us know!!!!  Let's keep the Intern busy.

The Criteria:
  1. All PSU runners finishing in the top 50 of an NCAA Championship Meet are included.
  2. Points are awarded in a reverse order of their finish.  A 50th place finish is worth 1 point and a first place finish is worth 50 points.  This skews the results toward those that run in multiple NCAA Championships. But placing high still means the most.
  3. Tiebreakers: a) # of appearances in NCAAs top 50 and  b) most recent to oldest.

  • Each year's finishing point total from earlier is multiplied by a factor defined as:

# of Finishers in Race Year (x)
# of Finishers in 2009 (254) 
The Top Penn State Women NCAA Cross Country Runners Of All-Time:

  1. Bridget Franek - 23rd 2008, 26th 2009 for 52.8 points.
  2. Susanne Heyer - 14th 2000 for 36.7 points.
  3. Caitlin Lane - 16th 2011 for 35.0 points.
  4. Stacia Perry - 23rd 1985, 41st 1987, 31st 1988 for 30.1 points.
  5. Kimberly Kelly - 27th 1992, 35th 1994 for 28.4 points.
  6. Kimberly McGreevy - 28th in 1996 for 19.4 points.
  7. Heather Carmichael - 31st 1981, 43rd 1983 for 13.1 points.
  8. Doreen Startare - 28th in 1982 for 12.0 points.
  9. Kelli Hunt - 42nd 1992, 44th 1993 for 11.4 points.
  10. Colleen Glyde - 41st 1992 for 7.1 points.
  11. Wendy Nelson - 43rd 1990 for 5.6 points.
  12. Torri Perri - 47th 2012 for 4.0 points.
  13. Erin St. John - 46th 1994 for 3.6 points.
  14. Jennifer Weaver - 46th 1993 for 3.6 points.
  15. Meredith White - 45th 1984 for 2.6 points.  
Torri Perri, 2012.
Doreen Startare, left, 1982.
Caitlin Lane, 2011.
Bridget Franek, 2008, 2009.
Kathy Mills, pre-NCAA Legend.
Heather Carmichael, front, training with Arthur Lydiard.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Reconfigured Top PSU Mens Cross Country Runners Of All-Time

It took the Mathematics Intern much more time to perform the meticulous calculations to arrive at the final results of our exercise in divining the best of the best among all Penn State Cross Country runners of all-time than anyone had postulated.  In his defense, the intern is unpaid and subject to a world which is way more complicated than it should be. Anyone wishing to contribute to the coffers of the poor intern can contact me...

In review, here are the original criteria for the list:

The (Original) Criteria:
  1. All PSU runners finishing in the top 20 of an NCAA Championship Meet are included.  This, of course skews the results toward the old-timers.  Back before 1973, any team could enter the race, and there were far fewer teams and runners overall. And it ignores someone who placed 21st in 4 straight Championships! Now that would be one Heck of a runner.
  2. Points are awarded in a reverse order of their finish.  A 20th place finish is worth 1 point and a first place finish is worth 20 points.  This skews the results toward those that run in multiple NCAA Championships. But placing high still means the most.
  3. Tiebreakers: a) # of appearances in NCAAs top 20 and  b) most recent to oldest.
Our New Criteria are then superimposed upon this original list.  The new criteria involves a weighting in an effort to incorporate the competitive strength of each year's race.  Of course any criteria such as this is somewhat subjective and can cause arguments and discussions on its suitability. This is welcome! It is difficult to precisely measure whether a race in 1952 was as difficult to finish in the top 20 as compared to a race in 2006.  But a reasonable estimate can be made simply by noting the number of finishers in the race and compensating for it as compared to a standard number.  In this case the standard is the number of finishers in 1970, the year with the greatest number of runners.

New superimposed Criteria:
  • Each year's finishing point total from earlier is multiplied by a factor defined as:

# of Finishers in Race Year (x)
# of Finishers in 1970 (305) 


Here's the Original Top Ten Runners of All-Time:

  1. Robert Hollen - 17th 1951, 7th 1952, 6th 1953 for 33 points.
  2. Curtis Stone -  7th 1942, 2nd 1946 for 33 points.
  3. Alan Scharsu - 19th 1979, 7th 1980, 6th 1981 for 31 points.
  4. William Ashenfelter - 8th 1950, 4th 1951 for 30 points.
  5. Eric Carter - 9th 1985, 4th 1987 for 29 points.
  6. Gerald Karver - 9th 1942, 6th 1947 for 27 points,
  7. Norman Gordon - 11th 1941, 5th 1942 for 26 points.
  8. Horace Ashenfelter - 19th 1946, 2nd 1947 for 21 points.
  9. Greg Fredericks - 4th 1970, 20th 1971 for 18 points.
  10. Paul Stemmer - 5th 1975 for 16 points.
  11. William Smith - 5th 1938 for 16 points.
And the New Top Ten Penn State Mens Cross Country Runners of All-Time:

  1. Alan Scharsu - 19th 1979, 7th 1980, 6th 1981 for 22.2 points.
  2. Greg Fredericks - 4th 1970, 20th 1971 for 17.9 points.
  3. Eric Carter - 9th 1985, 4th 1987 for 17.1 points.
  4. Paul Stemmer - 5th 1975 for 14.1 points.
  5. Curtis Stone - 7th 1942, 2nd 1946 for 12.1 points.
  6. Robert Hollen - 17th 1951, 7th 1952, 6th 1953 for 11.0 points.
  7. Horace Ashenfelter - 19th 1946, 2nd 1947 for 10.5 points. 
  8. Gerald Karver - 9th 1942, 6th 1947 for 10.0 points.
  9. William Ashenfelter - 8th 1950, 4th 1951 for 9.6 points.
  10. Robert Snyder - 9th in 1978 for 9.5 points.
Robert Snyder 1978.

Paul Stemmer 1975.

Alan Scharsu 1978.

Greg Fredericks 1970.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

It's Not A Complete Return To Negativity

With all the up-beat news lately, I thought I could reintroduce some negativity slowly via the news about fitness and running in general.  It's not all negative though!

75% of us (my hand goes up) won't lose any weight even if we run 50 miles/week (I wish!).  It's even worse for women. (Missed that arrow at least!)

Eat Bacon, Don't Jog is the book by a health guru about getting fit.  Not quite sure I'm signing up for this even if it was guaranteed!

Health Food


And if you're a little bit down and confused with all that, at least PSU Women are now ranked #1 in the Mid-Atlantic Region and #15 overall!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Naked And Hunted By Authorities

Well, I don't think they even got the chance to be naked!  But the plans were leaked, and the authorities thwarted the efforts and convicted the entire team for Hazing.  This world is out of control, and this may be the best example yet.

Artist's Conception.

Noted naked runner himself, KKOB, brought me this news even before it hit the national news.  There must be some kind of message board for clothes-optional runners, or something!

The story is extra-important to our group as the head coach at Rider is our very own PSU Track Alumni (Golfer) Bob Hamer.  Bob was coached in high school at Council Rock by my daughter's current coach, Bill Preston at Penn State Mont Alto.



I don't know how I feel about all of this.  On the one hand, I find it innocent fun (sans illegal alcohol) and the first chance in life at seeing naked girls for geeks like me.  On the other hand, I am a big opponent of hazing in any form.  But was this hazing when no one was coerced into participating?  And, again as always, I don't have all of the facts.

Next time guys and girls, wear a g-string and pasties and I think you'll be fine?  What do you think Kelly?

Monday, October 19, 2015

Carpe Noctem

While most of you were watching OSU/PSU the other night, Ron "Run More" Moore was practising for his upcoming 100 Miler!

I'm pretty sure the glow is low-level radiation.

He ran loop after loop of a 3 mile course somewhere in the bowels of Tenneessee in the dark while I kept him informed of the best game PSU has played all year. He did at least 56 miles.

Be sure to let him know you are on his side and even donate to his cause in the fight against cancer!

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Carpe Diem

A Rare Totally Curmudgeonly-Free Post by your favorite Curmudgeon!

There are great things happening in the Penn State Track and Field World.  And every one of you can help in any number of ways.  So get off your butt and seize the day!

I spent yesterday in State College. The State College I have come to know and love. At one point at a pivotal moment in my world, the temperature dropped 10 degrees in minutes, snow, rain and sleet began and grayness enveloped the Valley.  And I wasn't even crabby!

How can that be?  What could possibly make ME ignore something to complain about so easily?  Well, Number 1 on the list is this man...


Yeah, you younger people recognize Billy Francis immediately.  I was taken aback while taking pics at the Penn State Open when I recognized a PSU Alumni Singlet in the distance. (and I swear there's another new sale coming!)  I couldn't figure out who it was until he got close.  Billy was in San Diego just 1 day before, enjoying 95 degree temps and possibly "chillin" (or whatever you young hipsters do nowadays!)  But there he was, fighting for position amidst the runners 3 or 4 years younger than him! (hee hee hee, Billy)

I greeted him and received a big hug in reply.  And I've been happy ever since.  I'm not making that up.  I've only ever met two people like Billy, one of them being Billy. (The other was John "DNA" Kauffman for what its worth.)  These two people have the rarest of touches in this crazy world.  The glass is always half full, and might as well be overflowing for these two.  I learned in my numerous Genetics classes (all A's BTW!) that you are either born happy, or not.  Billy wasn't just born happy, he was born to BE happy and make those around him happy.  God bless you Billy.  I'm a big fan.  And everyone should friend him on the various social media.  It will be worth it.  It's also why he has been named our Group's Undersecretary of Fun.

Other Reasons For Not Being Crabby:
  
  • Got to see Coach Gondak and Roger "Gunny" Roll at the meet.  Both in good shape and working hard.  Gunny was able to send my greetings to Coach Groves.  (And don't the rest of you ever fail to thank Gunny for what he has done for our Country, our Team and Coach Groves whenever you see him!)
    Gunny and Coach Gondak.
  •  Got to meet Craig Houtz who has been taking photos for PSU Athletics since 1977!  He has just digitized most of his collections.  Maybe we will be able to tap into some great pics of days of yore!
  •  Got to see Daughter The Elder place 2nd in the PSUAC Conference in the Penn State Open in the snow, sleet and rain!  Next up, the USCAA Nationals in Florida, with Jim Ryun in attendance!
     
  •  Got to see Coach Teri Jordan at the meet.  Talked about her son Dan Jordan's new job in Florida and reminded her not to miss the next reunion!  
    Coach Teri Jordan.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

We Really Are Teammates Regardless Whether We Ever Even Ran Or Jumped Or Threw Together!


I recently had a wonderful conversation with Bob Radzwich which warmed my heart more than any has for quite a while.  I know Bob through our group and his attendance at our events for a number of years. He is the sole reason I purchase "Death By Chocalate" Ice Cream whenever I'm in State College. (We WILL talk more about actually golfing with us next time!)

Inevitably, the conversation accentuated what I have been telling all of you for quite some time.  Penn State Track and Field Alumni (Golfers) are the most interesting, the most accomplished and the smartest people I have ever met.

Turns out that Bob has the same goals as Clark Haley's original vision that created our rag-tag conglomeration of what I affectionately call "Idiots".  To be one of our Idiots means you are very proud of Penn State and honor Coach Groves and The Program in your every-day life.

Well, Bob also is very passionate about funding the Coach Groves Scholarship Endowment.  His idea is to help fund the Scholarship at the same time you enroll or renew your Nittany Lion Club membership!
And it turns out that it is possible.

From Bob and his "90's Friends":


I’m looking for 100 Alums to give $100 and the major goal is 100 Alums to give $1000 to Groves scholarship.
Thanks,
Bob Radzwich
For those of you who are part of the Nittany Lion Club, I have confirmed you can apply your donation to the Groves Scholarship towards your yearly renewal.  This way you can both designate your donation to the Groves Scholarship and get all the points and benefits of your donation towards your NLC standing.  Do it before 1 Nov and get 3 extra NLC points for early renewal.  Plus if giving $110 more than you gave last year, will also get another NLC bonus.  More $ for Groves Scholarship and more points towards your NLC points total.

The process to donate online:

1] Log into your NLC account
2] Click on Donate or Renew link
3] In the Donation Fund Designation click on the "OTHER 2016 Athletic Donations"
4] Click add to Cart
5] Click Checkout 
6] A survey window will pop up.  Need to enter "Harry Groves Scholarship - Track and Field" into the last box labeled: If you choose other as a donation designation, specify where your gift should be allocated (i.e. sport, scholarship, capital project). :
7] Fill in payment info and submit

If you have any problems you can call Christy at the NLC at the number listed below and she can walk you through it to ensure you get your points and the Groves Scholarship gets your donation allocated to it properly -

Mark Wimmer

And be sure to spread this post around to everyone you know.  Let's finish funding the Endowment once and for all, so we can get to the next task of funding a real outdoor track and stadium and endowing the entire Track Program for posterity!

Friday, October 16, 2015

This Still Isn't The Way To Determine The Rest Of PSU's Best Cross Country Runners Of All-Time

Here's the rest of the list of "The Top PSU Cross Country Runners of All-Time".  Remember, the criteria were set in the last post, which showed the top 11 of All-Time.

12.  Gerald Norman - 6th in 1960 for 15 points.
13.  Richard Englebrink - 7th in 1959 for 14 points.
14.  Howard Deardorff - 8th in 1960 for 13 points.
15.  Robert Snyder - 9th in 1978 for 12 points.
16.  Robert Freebairn - 11th in 1950 for 10 points.
17.  Brian Laird - 13th in 1988 for 8 points.
18.  Fred Kerr -  13th in 1957 for 8 points.
19.  Lamont Smith - 13th in 1953 for 8 points.
20.  Donald Ashenfelter - 13th in 1949 for 8 points.
21.  McClain Smith - 13th in 1942 for 8 points.
22.  Larry Mangan - 14th in 1980 for 7 points.
23.  Donald Freebairn - 14th in 1949 for 7 points.
24.  George Malley - 17th in 1975, 20th in 1976 for 5 points.
25.  Jack Saint Clair - 16th in 1950 for 5 points.
26.  Albert Porto - 16th in 1949 for 5 points.
27.  Herman Goffberg - 16th in 1941 for 5 points.
28.  Raymond Smith - 17th in 1967 for 4 points.
29.  Herman Weber - 17th in 1960 for 4 points.
30.  Donald Woodrow - 17th in 1956 for 4 points.
31.  William Gordon - 17th in 1950 for 4 points.
32.  Fred Lennox - 17th in 1947 for 4 points.
33.  Steve Brown - 20th in 1989 for 1 point.
34.  Doug Moorhead - 20th in 1954 for 1 point.

Director of Youth Development Artie Gilkes and Herm Goffberg.

   
Herm Goffberg.
Robert Snyder.

Ryan Foster, Larry Mangan, Al Porto, and Steve Balkey.

Brian Laird, 2nd from right.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

This Isn't The Right Way To Determine The Top Ten PSU Mens Cross Country Runners Of All-Time

In the spirit of the ole bar room arguments like "Who is the greatest baseball player of all-time?" (It's Pete Rose BTW!), I have concocted a ridiculous look back at the history of PSU Cross Country to try to determine the top echelon of runners.  These sorts of things are always subject to the vagaries and whims of whomever is defining the criteria.  Others can vehemently disagree.  Which is usually the whole point of the exercise.

The Criteria:
  1. All PSU runners finishing in the top 20 of an NCAA Championship Meet are included.  This, of course skews the results toward the old-timers.  Back before 1973, any team could enter the race, and there were far fewer teams and runners overall. And it ignores someone who placed 21st in 4 straight Championships! Now that would be one Heck of a runner.
  2. Points are awarded in a reverse order of their finish.  A 20th place finish is worth 1 point and a first place finish is worth 20 points.  This skews the results toward those that run in multiple NCAA Championships. But placing high still means the most.
  3. Tiebreakers: a) # of appearances in NCAAs top 20 and  b) most recent to oldest.
The Results:
  1. Robert Hollen* - 17th 1951, 7th 1952, 6th 1953 for 33 points.
  2. Curtis Stone -  7th 1942, 2nd 1946 for 33 points.
  3. Alan Scharsu - 19th 1979, 7th 1980, 6th 1981 for 31 points.
  4. William Ashenfelter - 8th 1950, 4th 1951 for 30 points.
  5. Eric Carter - 9th 1985, 4th 1987 for 29 points.
  6. Gerald Karver - 9th 1942, 6th 1947 for 27 points,
  7. Norman Gordon - 11th 1941, 5th 1942 for 26 points.
  8. Horace Ashenfelter - 19th 1946, 2nd 1947 for 21 points.
  9. Greg Fredericks - 4th 1970, 20th 1971 for 18 points.
  10. Paul Stemmer - 5th 1975 for 16 points.
  11. William Smith - 5th 1938 for 16 points. 
* Variously spelled Hellen, Holen and Hollen in each of the years results pages.  More information wanted!!
Alan Scharsu
Bill and HoraceAshenfelter, and Curt Stone

Curt Stone

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

More From The 1950 PSU XC NCAA Championship

It seems it was a typical Michigan Fall day....  I spent 2 years there, although it seemed like a decade.


Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Who Knew There Was Money In Mud?

Well, apparently Bridget Franek did.  And took advantage of it at the Warrior Dash World Championship where she placed first overall, garnering one of those big checks like on Let's Make a Deal.  And that's more money than I made in my first year of my day job!





Monday, October 12, 2015

Penn's Track Glass Is Only Half Full: Now With 2 Addendums!

 "The renovation allows the track to still have one of the widest radii in the country, which is important for running fast times."
-Steve Dolan, Penn Coach.

9 lanes, 6 "regulation"


So I was misled about the refurbishment of the Penn Track that occurred over the Summer.  Trust, but verify is the coin of the realm, I suppose.

Thanks to Owen Dawson for the heads up on this.   

I was assured that the $3 Million construction would make the track eligible for both NCAA and USATF Championships.  But that may not be the case.  I was told that there would be the required 8 lanes of 400M running room.  That is not the case.  There will be six 400M lanes amid the total of nine lanes.  The inside rail will still be between lanes 3 and 4.

There has been noticeable improvements and improved times are expected.  There will be available space to run the 100M in either direction to take advantage of the winds.  Jumping events will have better exposure also in either direction.  The awkward steeple pit has been moved from the outside curve to an inside position.  Finishing lines and starting lines for all events are improved.


Addendum: Also from a comment from Kelly O'Brien,

Tsk tsk!
I should have been a bit more clear on my June 23rd FB post. This is only stage 1 of construction. Moving the SC water pit shows the plans to host world etc sanctioned meets have been accepted. Penn is now working on the wall move vs. football game timing issue.

"Yeah babee...butt nekkid!
My sources find that there are plans to move the walls back 3-4 rows at least, flip the track, among much more. The facility submitted plans and started negotiations to obtain rights to host the ncaa championships on a recurring basis starting in early 20s. The facility should be fully restored by end of September to meet football needs.
It is also negotiating with usatf and other track orgs. The steeple pit location will tell you how the negotiations are going/went. The pics are unclear ss to its new location in relation to the original lanes 5-8.
(Someone needs to do some research and realize that the ncaa and other track orgs have been trying for decades to entice Penn to convert its track to host championships. The infrastructure and staff and all other resources have been deemed ideal and ANY meet short of the Olympic Athletics would be easily and safely accommodated.)"

Addendum II:  Is a Diamond League Meet Possible?

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Jack Saint Clair Invitational 2015


  "To run well, you have to be a bull."
-Jack Saint Clair, about his course.


I traveled to my favorite city today to check out the refurbishment of the Belmont Plateau Cross Country courses at the Jack Saint Clair Invitational.

Jack was Penn State's team captain in 1950 when they traveled to Michigan State to upset the home team for the National Championship.  The team included Horace Ashenfelter's brothers William and Don, Robert Freebairn, Dudley Foster, William Gordon and our Long Driver himself, Al Porto!

Jack was the long-time coach of Cardinal Dougherty High School (1956-1968) and then Temple University (1967-1983).  He actually created the course at Belmont Plateau in 1963.  He passed away in 2007.

In 1963, Mr. St. Clair and coaches from Villanova University and what was then St. Joseph's College designed the five-mile college course at Belmont Plateau. It is still considered a course with everything a runner could want: steep challenging climbs, rapid descents, grass and dirt trails, and spectacular scenery, including the Philadelphia skyline.
Flagpole Hill. The flagpole is now on top of the mansion.

Signs are everywhere for all distances (except the 6K!)

On a clear day you can still see William Penn's statue atop City Hall.

The 1 Mile Mark just as you enter the woods.

Parachute Hill is much more overgrown than I remember!


Team captain 1950 NCAA Champion Nittany Lions.

Start Line is a permanent fixture with 2 large poles.

Detailed course maps are available.
 And here's the results of the 17 team 1950 NCAA XC Championships:  (PSU 53 pts., MSU 55 pts.)




Thursday, October 8, 2015

"Bite Me, Clark" And Other Coach Groves Videos To Spur Viewership

Here's a sampling of Coach Groves videos from the past years some of you may enjoy.

First, here's another time Coach showed me the line on a putt.  I just missed the 40-footer with his advice...



And here's his 80th Birthday Celebration at our Reunion...



And here is his address at our 2012 Reunion...


Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Penn's Track Upgrade Is Complete, To The Shrugs Of Current Penn Athletes

The new upgrade is now complete at the Franklin Field home of the Penn Relays.  I actually talked to a few athletes on the Penn Club XC team 2 weeks ago that had actually practiced on it.  None of them knew anything about the old track and its history!  Or the Lane 4 "inside lane". And yes, the steeple pit is moved near "the clock".




One "upgrade" we won't see is the return to old Mens restroom facilities us old-timers knew and loved. The politically correct and Green among us would never allow such things today.  Here's just a hint of the vast vintage restroom facilities at Franklin Field that George McWilliams brings us from Bennett's Bar in Edinburgh Scotland.




 
Web Statistics