2020 D1 Indoor Top 25 Rankings (Men): Update #1


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TSR contributors may value certain aspects and ranking criteria differently between men and women when constructing our Indoor Top 25...

KEY

(Unranked):

Was not ranked the week before.


(#/#):

First number indicates how much the individual has moved in the rankings.

The second number indicates where they were ranked the week before.

25. Sam Tanner, Freshman, Washington (Unranked)

Wow! What a season debut from Washington freshman Sam Tanner.


It was no secret that the New Zealand native was supremely talented after running 3:38 for 1500 meters and 3:58 for the mile during his time as a high schooler. However, after a quiet cross country season, it felt like many fans of the sport (including us) began to temper our expectations about what Tanner would do in his first year of collegiate competition.


That, of course, was an oversight, as Tanner is clearly better on the track than the grass.


The newest Husky just ran 2:21 for 1000 meters this past weekend at the UW Preview, taking down an absurdly deep field packed with Oregon's best runners as well as a handful of pro athletes. Tanner was the only athlete to break the 2:22 barrier.


It's difficult to gauge what this performance means for Tanner moving forward as the 1000 meters is such a unique event in and of itself. Still, one thing is clear. Tanner is ready to be a major contender in the NCAA this season.


24. Isaiah Jewett, Senior, USC (-1 /23)

Has not yet competed this season.


23. Kigen Chemadi, Senior, Mid. Tenn. State (Unranked)

Chemadi has been a workhorse in the early portion of the season. He was the 2nd collegiate to cross the line at the Boston University Season Opener back in December, running a personal best of 13:36, a time that will surely qualify him for Nationals.


Since then, Chemadi - along with teammate Jacob Choge - have been dropping down in distance to test their tactical prowess and speed. Last weekend, Chemadi toed the line against a handful of talented professionals in the 3000 meters to finish 4th overall in a time of 8:02. Now, this past weekend, Chemadi ran a new PR of 4:00.46 for the mile at Vanderbilt.


Chemadi is showing that he can do it all. He's displaying underrated range and is clearly refining how he executes his race strategies. Chemadi doesn't need to post monster times this season (he already did that in Boston), he just needs to show progress and the ability to develop a tactical racing style for NCAA's in March.


22. James Sugira, Rs. Sophomore, Eastern Kentucky (-3 / 19)

Still no Sugira. We'll wait until our next rankings update to see whether or not we should keep him in our rankings, but his continued absence is concerning.


21. Ben Veatch, Junior, Indiana (-3 / 18)

Veatch didn't have the greatest opener ever when he ran 13:56 at the Hoosier Open back in December. Admittedly, there was minimal competition and with Mau pulling away to win by 12 seconds, Veatch was likely left to fend for himself throughout most of the race.


We haven't seen Veatch compete since then, but he likely be gearing up for another 3k or 5k performance in the near future.


20. Sam Worley, Junior, Texas (+1 / 21)

Has not yet competed this season.


19. Carleton Orange, Senior, Texas A&M (+1 / 20)

Orange opened up his season with a respectable time of 2:24 for 1000 meters back in December. That's a new PR for the Texas A&M Aggie who had never run faster than 2:25 up until then. Orange recently ran in the 400 meters this past weekend, finishing 3rd overall in a time of 48.19 seconds.


18. Ryan Adams, Senior, Furman (Unranked)

Have a day, Ryan Adams.


We knew that the Furman veteran was talented, specifically in the mile and 1500 meter distances, but his performance at Vanderbilt this past weekend was jaw-dropping. The Paladin ace held off a talented mile field (with the exception of Suliman) en route to a runner-up finish and a massive personal best of 3:57.66.


There was no doubt in our minds that Adams could be competitive during the winter months if he wanted to be, especially after a breakout cross country season this past fall. Of course, his history of limited success on the indoor oval left him as an afterthought coming into this season.


That, of course, was clearly the wrong the decision as Adams have now vaulted himself into the upper-echelon of the NCAA. He now owns the #2 time on the collegiate leaderboard and has essentially made himself a lock to qualify for Nationals.


It will be interesting to see what event Adams pursues next...


17. Cameron Griffith, Rs. Senior, Arkansas (0 / 17)

Griffith was a DNF this past weekend at the Arkansas Invite. Maybe he was pacing, but I'm not sure there is much to be concerned about here.


16. Luis Grijalva, Rs. Sophomore, Northern Arizona (+6 / 22)

Really nice opener from Grijalva. He finished 2nd overall among his teammates at the Lumberjack Team Challenge, earning an altitude converted mile time of 3:58.69. That mark will likely be good enough to qualify for Nationals if Grijalva wants to pursue the event. However, more importantly, Grijalva now has the freedom to venture in the 3k and 5k without the burden of needing a national qualifying time before March.


15. Alex Ostberg, Rs. Senior, Stanford (-1 / 14)

His season opener resulted in a mile time of 4:00.59 at the UW Preview. That's a fine mark, but it's not anything special. Ostberg finished as the 3rd best collegiate of the race, unable to edge out teammate Thomas Ratcliffe or conference rival Mick Stanovsek.


It's important that we don't look too heavily into this result. Ostberg is primarily a 3000 meter guy and we're only halfway through January. The performance just didn't do much to inspire us relative to others in our rankings.


14. Kyle Mau, Senior, Indiana (-2 / 12)

Mau opened up his season at the Hoosier Open back in December, soloing a time of 13:44 for 5000 meters. That was a great mark, and we expected to see even more fireworks this past weekend at Vanderbilt as he toed the line for the mile against a loaded field.


Unfortunately for Mau, the field got away from him. He dropped back to 5th overall as Suliman, Adams, and two professional athletes pulled away in the final moments of the race. The pace was fast, but with a personal best of 3:57, we thought that Mau would at least dip under the four minute barrier.


This was a very rare off-day for Mau, but in the grand scheme of things, it's not a terrible performance. He'll most likely attempt to bounce back with a fast 3000 meter time later in the season. If that happens, he may end up returning to the mile in an effort to join Suliman and Adams at the top of the NCAA leaderboard.


13. James West, Rs. Senior, Oregon (+2 / 15)

It was a solid, but unexciting opener for West this past weekend as he ran 2:23 for 1000 meters at the UW Preview to finish 6th overall. He may have lost to a few other teammates and competitors that aren't currently ranked, but we're only looking at this as a rust-buster performance for him. The mile and 3000 meters is where West has developed his reputation and his plethora of experience is what gives him this ranking.


12. Festus Lagat, Senior, Iowa State (Unranked)

It feels odd placing a guy who was once unranked at the #12 spot in our rankings. Our biggest concern with Lagat entering this season was that he never ran faster than 1:48 during the indoor track season. His limited (albeit, respectable) success on the indoor oval made him a fringe name for our rankings.


But after opening his season with a 2:23/4:04 double (1000 and mile), following that up with a 2:20 1k performance, and then recently running 4:02 at the Larry Wieczorek Invite, it's hard to ignore the fact that Lagat is a) running incredibly fast in an event that closely mirrors the 800 meters (the 1k) and b) is consistently improving every time he steps on the track.


With Marco Arop now out of the NCAA and the 800 meter field behind Dixon being a free-for-all, it's hard not to acknowledge the value that Lagat could have on the national stage this year between the four-lap race and the DMR.

11. Cooper Williams, Senior, Indiana (Unranked)

Much like Lagat, it's hard to look at Williams and see anything but upside based on what he has run this season. He opened up his season with an excellent time of 2:22 for the 1000 meters and then recently ran 1:47 at Vanderbilt to beat out a handful of respectable names (including Ole Miss' John Rivera) and earn the top time in the NCAA.


With the 800 meters being as wide-open as it is, Williams having earned back-to-back 5th place finishes on the national stage, and his incredibly strong start to the season, it was only fair that the Indiana ace earned a spot in our Top 25.


10. Cooper Teare, Junior, Oregon (+3 / 13)

The men's 1000 meter race at the UW Preview had a ton of surprises this past weekend, but maybe the biggest surprise was seeing 3k/5k specialist Cooper Teare drop down in distance to finish 2nd overall in a blazing fast time of 2:22.


Teare finished ahead of a handful of men who are (supposedly) better suited for the shorter distance. This is a monumental step forward for Teare who is now displaying speed that could make him a significant threat on the national stage in tactical races.


9. Waleed Suliman, Junior, Ole Miss (+7 / 16)

The runner of the week has to be Waleed Suliman. The Ole Miss star dropped a huge mile time at Vanderbilt this past weekend, running 3:57.03 to fend off a great performance from Furman's Ryan Adams.


It's not necessarily surprising that Suliman ran a time this fast. After all, his personal best is 3:56.78. But Suliman is now showing how dangerous and dynamic he can be at any point in the season. This was a huge win to have, especially for the middle of January, and coming out on top in a field that consisted of NCAA elites such as Kyle Mau, Kigen Chemadi, Jacob Choge, and (now) Ryan Adams has to be a huge confidence booster moving forward.


Suliman has typically focused on the 800 meters and the mile when he steps onto the track, but with a pair of All-American finishes in cross country over the past two years, it would be interesting to see what he could do in a 3000 meter race.


Postseason performances are still a major consideration for our rankings, but gosh, it's hard to dislike this season opener.


8. Tyler Day, Rs. Senior, Northern Arizona (+1 / 9)

At the Lumberjack Team Challenge, the NAU veteran hopped into the mile to pursue a fast converted mark. Ultimately, Day finished 3rd overall in a time of 4:08, but after conversions, that new time read 3:59.21.


For someone who is typically classified as a 3k/5k guy, this was a really nice way for Day to open up his indoor track season in an off-distance event.


7. Carlos Villarreal, Senior, Arizona (+1 / 8)

It wasn't a flashy time, but Villarreal secured a very encouraging win in the mile this past weekend at the Larry Wieczorek Invite. The field, which didn't have the same amount of star power than what we saw at Vanderbilt, still had a slew of underrated talents including Brody Smith, Jaret Carpenter, Festus Lagat and Olin Hacker.


In the end, it was Villarreal take home the W with a time of 4:00.64. He'll obviously need to improve upon that time over the next month and a half (and he definitely will), but coming out on top over a sneaky-deep field is something to be encouraged by.


6. Geordie Beamish, Senior, Northern Arizona (+1 / 7)

Altitude conversions have treated Beamish well throughout his career. Last winter, he ran a converted 3:57.99 en route to a national qualifying time. When some critics argued that the conversion was too generous, Beamish made a point to quell any doubts about his abilities by pulling off a tremendous upset over Oliver Hoare at the NCAA Indoor Championships.


Sure enough, Beamish is back to his old ways. He was the first man across the line this past weekend at the Lumberjack Team Challenge, earning a 3:58.17 altitude conversion which now lists him at NCAA #3 for the mile.


The nice thing about this performance is that Beamish is likely going to be a comfortable national qualifier in the mile now that he has this mark. It wouldn't be surprising to see Beamish pursue a fast 3000 meter or 5000 meter time later this season.


5. Edwin Kurgat, Senior, Iowa State (+5 / 10)

It's been a while since we released our Preseason Top 25 Rankings which means we have yet to properly give Edwin Kurgat the ranking he deserves. The Iowa State ace opened up his season back in December at the Boston University Season Opener. Kurgat dominated the race, winning with a time of 13:24. That is the fastest collegiate 5k time ever run in the month of December.


Kurgat has very clearly elevated his fitness to a point where he is simply aerobically superior to his competitors. The only uncertainty we have moving forward with him is how he will be able to handle the often tactical nature of championship races.


4. Yared Nuguse, Junior, Notre Dame (+2 / 6)

Has not yet competed this season.


3. Devin Dixon, Senior, Texas A&M (0 / 3)

Dixon opened his season back in early December by participating on a Texas A&M 4x400 relay. He didn't compete again until this past weekend where he ran 47.91 for 400 meters en route to an encouraging win over Cameron Brown of Sam Houston State.


2. Joe Klecker, Rs. Senior, Colorado (0 / 2)

Has not yet competed this season. Klecker announced via Instagram that he'll be pursuing the first sub-four minute mile on Colorado soil on January 31st.


1. Oliver Hoare, Senior, Wisconsin (0 / 1)

Has not yet competed this season.

ADDED

Festus Lagat (Iowa State)

Cooper Williams (Indiana)

Ryan Adams (Furman)

Kigen Chemadi (Middle Tennessee State)

Sam Tanner (Washington)


KICKED OFF

Marco Arop (Mississippi State)

Amon Kemboi (Campbell)

Conner Mantz (BYU)

John Dressel (Colorado)

Casey Comber (Villanova)

Isaiah Jewett (USC)


JUST MISSED (in no order)

John Dressel (Colorado)

Casey Comber (Villanova)

Thomas Ratcliffe (Stanford)

Mick Stanovsek (Washington)

Reed Brown (Oregon)

Charlie Hunter (Oregon)

Kasey Knevelbaard (Florida State)

Gilbert Boit (Arkansas)

Michael Rhoads (Air Force)

Jonathan Davis (Illinois)

Robert Brandt (UCLA)

Jacob Choge (Middle Tennessee State)

Eric Hamer (Colorado State)

Tanner Anderson (Washington)

Isaiah Jewett (USC)


HONORABLE MENTIONS (in no order)

John Rivera (Ole Miss)

Matthew Schadler (Indiana)

George Kusche (Nebraska)

Ryan Raff (Northern Arizona)

Domenic Perretta (Penn State)

Roshon Roomes (Iowa State)

Daniel Nixon (Iowa State)

Jackson Mestler (Oregon)

Jaret Carpenter (Purdue)

Brody Smith (Purdue)

Andrew Jordan (Washington)

Matt Manternach (Iowa)

Dan Schaeffer (Binghamton)

Colton Johnsen (Washington State)


NOTES

- TSR has reason to believe that Amon Kemboi will not be running this season. For that reason, he has been removed from our rankings.