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, January 31, 2018

Thank You! We're Setting Records. And We Can Celebrate The Coach Groves Scholarship At Our Reunion In May

At some point soon, we will have peaked with over 20,000 page views in the past month.  And now well over 700,000 lifetime page views in our 10 year history.  Thank you for continuing to spread the word.

And now that we have fully funded a full tuition scholarship in the name of Coach Groves, we can celebrate at this year's Reunion and Golf Tourney.

Big News:  Clark Haley is finalizing details to have the first ever DOWNTOWN REUNION at the Days Inn.  You must set aside the weekend of May 18 and 19 this year to attend the festivities.  And spread that word too!

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Singlets And Wristbands And Alums, Oh My!

The weekend was full of action, with many alums taking care to remember their roots in Happy Valley.  A few Alumni Singlets were sighted and a few Wristbands were noted on some Track Alumni (Golfers).  (Another sale of Alumni Singlets will commence shortly!  And possibly a new Wristband will be forthcoming at the next Reunion.)

Isaiah Harris with his newly replaced "PSU is 800U" wristband.

Diamond League Champion Darrell Hill competing in his Alumni Singlet at the Penn State National.

Cas Loxsom at the Armory with his Alumni Singlet.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Another Penn State Nonagenarian Track Alum of 880U Passes Away

From our good friend and high school coach of several Nittany Lions, Bill Preston, comes news of the passing of William "Bill" Jimeson.

William "Bill" Jimeson, 97, of Ponte Vedra, passed away peacefully at the Bailey Family Center for Caring. Born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Bill was an accomplished athlete in track and field, setting the Wilkinsburg High School track record 880. He also finished 6th in the Western Pennsylvania Cross-Country Championships and placed 4th in the outdoor 880 mile run. A graduate of Penn State University, Bill was captain of the freshman cross-country team. In a special mile relay event at the 1944 Penn Relays, he made up 25 yards as anchor, in a race voted the most outstanding of the meet. During his post-graduate studies at Johns Hopkins University, Bill won the 440, high hurdles, low hurdles and anchored the mile relay for high point man in the Mason Dixon Championship. One week in April he had the fastest time in the East for low hurdles. Bill placed 5th in the Olympic trials during the National AAU Championship in 1948. He went on to become a coach in track and field for the U.S. National Team, traveling to Russia and Poland. He also founded and coached the Baltimore Olympic Club from 1946-1967, which was the only club to ever have a fall dual meet cross-country season and an outdoor dual meet track season. In fact, the BOC won every South Atlantic Association AAU outdoor track championship from 1946 to Bill's retirement  from coaching. They also won the mile relay crown and had the fastest mile relay ever at old Madison  Square Garden. For 31 years, Bill worked as a sales representative for Allyn and Bacon Publishing Company in Baltimore. In 1979, he moved from Baltimore to South Ponte Vedra, where for 14 years, he served as the Fire Chief at Station 9, the South Ponte Vedra Volunteer Fire Dept. In his spare time, Bill enjoyed big band music and reading the Baltimore newspaper. He was a very devoted husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather, and he will be deeply missed.
He is survived by his wife of almost 72 years, Margaret Jimeson of Ponte Vedra; a daughter, Barbara Dian Jimeson of St. Augustine; grandson, Brian Hayden and his wife Jodi Hayden and great-grandchildren, Amanda and Brian, Jr. He was preceded in death by his parents, Wilbur and Betty Jimeson; sister, Carolyn Martin and his son, William C. Jimeson, Jr.
A celebration of his life will take place at 3 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 10, 2018, at the Allegro in St. Augustine.
St. Johns Family Funeral Home  is in charge of arrangements.

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Big News! It Was A Great Day In State College. Where Were You?

I had a wonderful day in Happy Valley yesterday.  I'm back at the three computers making up Blog Central again.  Too bad that two of them are on the fritz and the third one seems sluggish.

The day started out with a visit with final semester Daughter the Elder.  The shopping trip on her behalf didn't cost me too much, so I got off easy.  And her dog was rewarded with a dog bed from Five Below which she apparently really likes.

I held off on a Kung Pao lunch as we traveled to Coach Groves' favorite haunt, Panera in downtown State College for grilled cheese and tomato soup.  Driving past the blocks-long line to get into The Rathskeller reminded me of a few of my classmates (I'm thinking of you Mark Haywood!).

Then it was off to the Penn State National Meet for the afternoon Invitational events.  Got to see many Alumni (Golfers) and saw several winners of our Annual Performance of the Year polls.  There were a couple of highlights during the meet, which I will bring in future posts.

Then it was off to Little Szechuan (solid 8/10 on the Kung Pao scale I made up.) with Daughter the Elder for a real Kung Pao Dinner!  (You knew it was coming, didn't you?)

I then stopped in at the Coaches' Reception at Pickle's before heading home in the rain.  All in all, a good day.  It was great seeing so many of the best people on earth.

Big News:

In the days leading up to the Penn State National, some really great Track Alumni (Golfers) stepped up and put us over-the-top in our quest to fully fund a tuition scholarship in Coach Groves' name for the program.  That's right, we topped our goal of $300,000!  A few of our friends visited Coach Groves to present him with the certificate from the Penn State Varsity Club detailing the news.

We will have more on this to come, along with some additional stories, pics and videos from the exciting weekend.

Greg Fredericks, Bob Radzwich,Coach Groves, Larry Mangan and Mark Hawkins.

Saturday, January 27, 2018

On The Road Again!

Finally, a day off!  And I'm using it to travel to State College for the afternoon invitational section of the Penn State National.  I hope to bring you a story or two of the kind of things that won't be in the official news releases.  Maybe a pic or two and even a video?

Be sure to say hello if you're there already...

Thursday, January 25, 2018

PSU is 800U: Some Home Town Press For Another 2-Lapper And Possibly A Stolen Singlet?

Domenic Perretta got a little Press from a home town paper yesterday.  I hope to josh him a bit about it after he is done racing Saturday.

“I feel a lot stronger this year. I don’t know where my speed is right now, but I definitely feel a lot stronger. And it’s the beginning of the season, so I think I’m in a good spot.”

And the promotions for this weekend's 800M brouhaha at the Armory features a pic of Casimir Loxsom in a Brooks Singlet even though he no longers runs for the company.

Meanwhile a great workout pic of current Brooks Beast Brannon Kidder shows him without a Singlet at all!

Putting 2 and 2 together in my FBI-inspired mind, I figure Casimir is on the lam to the Big Apple for stealing his former roommate's shirt! 

And I hope to present Isaiah Harris with a replacement wristband this weekend.  I have cleared all of it with the NCAA.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

An Early Season Test For 800U?

While many of us will be in State College for the Penn State National, Cas Loxsom will venture forth to the Big Apple to compete in the Dr. Sander Invitational 800.  Others of note will be...

  • Clayton Murphy
  • Robby Andrews 
  • Erik Sowinski 

Saturday, January 20, 2018

A Challenge For The Penn State National?

I will be there for the Invitational Section of the Penn State National next week.  Hope you will come too and say hello!  It has been a great meet to attend for the last decade.  There is always a top performance or two and almost always a sub-4 mile.

Last year's edition brought us a Penn State Track and Field Alumni (Golfer) setting a World Record in the 600M with another Penn Stater just behind setting the Collegiate and School Record.  (1:14.91 and 1:14.96)

Isaiah Harris (1:14.96) Casimir Loxsom (1:14.91)

With yesterday's run by UTEP's Michael Saruni in Albequerque, that WR is gone (1:14.79).  Will anyone step up again to take it back at the Ashenfelter Track next week?

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Come Hang Out With Great People

There will be an Alumni Social following the Penn State National Indoor Meet on Saturday,  January 27 at 7:30 to 9:30 at Pickles.  All us cool people will be there, so why not you too?  Be sure to reply to Owen Dawson!  There's even an open bar!

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

PSU is Shot Put U: 2017 Performance Of The Year Results: And What a Year!

To put things in perspective concerning 2017 in the Penn State Track and Field Alumni Universe, one must take into account that Isaiah Harris' appearance at the World Championships 800M didn't even make the Finals..  And incredibly, here is one performance that came in tied for fourth place...
  • World Championships for 2 Middle Distance StarsBrannon Kidder and Casimir Loxsom helped the US win the 4 x 800M Relay at the IAAF Relay World Championships.
Also in fourth place...
  • Danae Rivers set at least 6 School Records in her Freshman Indoor Season.  She ended up with her name on the books in the 600M, 800M, Mile and DMR.
Meanwhile LAST place was...
  • Joe Kovacs with a Silver Medal in the World Championship Shot Put! (Joe has won the previous 2 Performances of the Year with his exploits.)
Third place was just...
  • The Mens Team winning their first ever Big Ten Outdoor Track title. 
And Second Place in the voting just happened to be a combination of a World Record and a Collegiate Record in the same race!
  • Casimir Loxsom World Record in the Indoor 600M with Isaiah Harris just a few hundredths  of a second behind for a School Record and Collegiate Record at the Penn State National.
But the Overall Winner of the 2017 Performance of the Year was the incredible last throw, 20 inch PR of Darrell Hill to win the IAAF Diamond League Shot Put title. Congrats to Darrell for making it the third year in a row that a Shot Putter has won the award. PSU is Shot Put U

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Season Opening Meet Is More Than A Rustbuster! And a Homecoming For An Officer Of The Group

Don't forget, there is only one day left to get your vote in for the 2017 Performance of the Year.  Go to the full website.  Look at the left sidebar and vote for your top 2 out of the 6 finalists!

There were 2 School Records set in the first meet of the season at the Horace Ashenfelter Indoor Track.
  • Bryce Williams stunned everyone except himself with an opening meet School Record in the Triple Jump.  (53’-3.50”)
  • David Lucas heaved the heavy ball further than any Nittany Lion ever. 
But in my eyes, the performance of the meet was our very own Undersecretary of Fun Billy Cvecko butting heads in the 800M with the younger crowd.  He finished third in 1:56.06.  And I'm betting he never gets enough sleep!

Saturday, January 13, 2018

George Washington Is Now A Member Of Our Group

I remember hearing stories of George Washington's athletic prowess as a kid.  But with all the myths and stories told, which ones could possibly be true?

One that just might be true is his unofficial world record of 22 feet 3 inches in what was then called the broad jump.

With his track and field bona fides sorta kinda cemented, we can now turn to his links to our group...

Turns out that former Lion great Ricky Garcia bought a house 4 years ago in Alexandria, VA which was built and used by George Washington himself.  The house remained in the Washington family for generations after.

When Ricky decided the house needed a basement he sought help in surveying and excavating the space beneath his living room.  When they discovered a well and cistern, archeologists became interested.  There is now an official archeological dig going on at the home!  I'm hoping they find a Penn Relays Watch or something similar (hee hee hee).

And don't forget that there is only 2 days left to vote in the 2017 Performance of the Year Poll on the left sidebar of the full website.  Please vote for your top 2 of the 6 finalists!

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

A True Gentleman

I was happy to see that our Chief Laundry and Morale Officer posted a couple of nice remembrances on the Facebook page about the passing of Penn State's Dean of Running, Horace Ashenfelter III, as I was away from Blog control.

It really is too late for me to add much to the many heartfelt regards streaming in from all over the world.  All I will add is that I was honored to be able to speak with him several years ago at our Reunion.  I was tickled to hear him tell me that a 3 to 5 mile run should be considered a long run!  He was also delighted to learn that we named the prize for the longest putt on hole 18 after him at the Coach Groves Golf Tournament.

Mr. Ashenfelter with our Golden Putter.
And don't forget to vote for the 2017 Performance of the Year on the left sidebar of the full website!

Monday, January 8, 2018

2017 Performance Of The Year Finals

Both Semi-Finals were close.  There were so many worthy performances this year, it was hard to pick only 3 in each semi-final.  But now it is time to pick among the 6 Final Performances...
  • Mens team wins the first ever Outdoor Track Big Ten title.
  • Darrell Hill wins the IAAF Diamond League Shot Put with a 20 inch PR.
  • Cas Loxsom sets the World Record in the Indoor 600M with Isaiah Harris just behind him to set the Collegiate Record.
  • Danae Rivers sets multiple Indoor School Records in the 600M, 800M, Mile and DMR.
  • Brannon Kidder and Cas Loxsom World Champions in the IAAF 4 x 800M Relay.
  • Joe Kovacs places 2nd in the IAAF World Championship Shot Put.
Go the the full website and vote for your top 2 performances on the left sidebar!

Saturday, January 6, 2018

PSU Is Shot Put U

The 2017 rankings are out and Penn State affiliated Shot Putters are high on the list again.

The US List:
  • #2 Joe Kovacs - 2nd place World Championships
  • #3 Darrell Hill - Diamond League Champion
  • #4 Ryan Whiting - former Assistant Coach
The World  List:
  • #3 Joe Kovacs
  • #6 Darrell Hill
  • #9 Ryan Whiting
And here's a nice article about Darrell Hill from another prominent track blog (although it has no Physics content as far as I know!)

And there is still a little time to vote in the 2nd and last semi-final for the  2017 Performance of the Year. Go to the full website and vote for your own top 3 on the left sidebar to put them into the Finals!

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Trapped Like A Rat 12?

I'm not really sure what number of annual trips in a row this is, but it has been long enough to not be able to keep track.

But it another one of those cold years they have down here in wonderful Florida every once in a while.  With snow to the north and freezing temperatures in the am for the next several days, it's not quite the same.  But I have always said I can vacation anywhere away from work....

Now don't forget to vote in the 2nd Semi-Final of the 2017 Performance of the Year.  We don't want to disappoint the Interns any more than the first semi-final already has...

Monday, January 1, 2018

2nd Semi-Final Poll For Performance Of The Year 2017

Happy New Year.  Now let's pick the final 3 finalists for our annual poll.  You know the drill...

  • Go to the full website
  • Look at the top of the left sidebar
  • Vote for your top 3
  • Tell all your friends to vote also
Our Semi-Finalists are:
  1. Joe Kovacs - Silver Medalist at World Championships Shot Put 
  2. Isaiah Harris - 2nd place at NCAA Championships 800M
  3. Malik Moffett - Big Ten Track Athlete of the Year -200M and Long Jump
  4. Mens Team - Big Ten Outdoor Championship
  5. Doreen Statare McCoubrie - 2nd age group at Boston Marathon
  6. Cas Loxsom (600M) and Brannon Kidder (1000M) 2nd USATF Indoor Champs.
  7. Xavier Smith - 60M Big Ten Championship in 6.66
  8. Mens 4 x 400M Indoor Big Ten Championship and School Record
  9. Brannon Kidder wins Milrose 1000M ahead of Cas Loxsom
  10. Danae Rivers with Indoor School Records in 600M, 800M, Mile and DMR
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