Updated: Feb 17
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TSR contributors may value certain aspects and ranking criteria differently between men and women when constructing our Indoor Top 25...
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 Ellis, Junior, Princeton (Unranked)
There were a plethora of sub-four minute miles this past weekend, but Sam Ellis stood out with his 3:57 result at Boston. For those unfamiliar with Ellis' resume, this may have come as a surprise, but this is the same guy who ran 2:22 for 1000 meters a week ago and had a 4:02 mile PR from this same meet last year. Yes, a time like 3:57 certainly wasn't expected, but the Princeton junior quietly has some of the better middle distance speed in the NCAA and this only validates that suspicion.
24. Alex Ostberg, Rs. Senior, Stanford (Unranked)
Welcome to the sub-7:50 club, Alex Ostberg. His 7:49 3k from the Husky Classic was impressive, but it's hard to get excited about it when 11 other men have also run that time (or faster) in the same season. Still, Ostberg deserves the recognition and a ranking.
Everyone else running fast doesn't make someone's performance any less impressive.
23. Michael Rhoads, Senior, Air Force (Unranked)
Rhoads kept it close in the 800 meters at Iowa State this past weekend, finishing 2nd overall to Festus Lagat and recording a time of 1:47.65. The Air Force senior was a sleeper pick of mine coming into this season and as of right now, he is so much more than just a sleeper pick. With Dixon recently showing signs of vulnerability and the 800 meters lacking depth compared to years past, Rhoads is becoming increasingly more relevant when talking about the 800 meters on the national stage.
22. Devin Dixon, Senior, Texas A&M (-19 / 3)
21. Carleton Orange, Senior, Texas A&M (-2 / 19)
We had been waiting for Devin Dixon to make his season debut in the 800 meters. When he finally did this past weekend, the result was underwhelming...to say the least.
USC's Isaiah Jewett defeated both Dixon and Orange this past weekend at the Clemson Tiger Paw Invite, winning in a modest time of 1:51.74. Orange and Dixon placed 2nd and 3rd, respectively, each with a pair of 1:52's.
There's still some time to run a national qualifying mark for Dixon, but this was not the result we were looking for out of someone who we considered to be the overwhelming national title favorite this season.
20. Kyle Mau, Senior, Indiana (-8 / 12)
After running 7:51.90 at the Indiana University Relays, Mau (correctly) realized that he was going to need a faster time to stay in the qualification conversation for Nationals. Sure enough, he stayed in Bloomington, Indiana this past weekend and recorded a time of 7:50.22, good for the #13 spot in the NCAA right now.
I hate to drop someone like Mau so far down in the rankings. It seems almost criminal, especially given his progression, consistency, and clutch national qualifying time. Still, it's very clear that Mau is pursuing the 3000 meters this season and that event is easily the best it has ever been. For that reason, we have to bump him back more than we usually would.
19. Morgan Beadlescomb, Senior, Michigan St. (Unranked)
A 13:31.50 result for 5000 meters at the Iowa State Classic, which resulted in a win over Virginia Tech's Peter Seufer, has to feel pretty good right now for the Michigan State distance star.
Fun fact: that time would've been the fastest 5k mark in the country last winter.
But this season? It only ranks at NCAA #4 right now. Nonetheless, Beadlescomb is a beast and attentive fans of the sport know that this isn't the first time that he has established himself as a national contender.
18. Peter Seufer, Senior, Virginia Tech (Unranked)
A flat-track converted 7:48 3k at Camel City and now a 13:36 for 5000 meters seemingly validates Seufer's breakout 4th place finish at the NCAA XC Championships back in November. This guy is clearly the real deal and will be in the All-American conversation for both events at Nationals.
17. Cooper Williams, Senior, Indiana (-6 / 11)
Williams was having an outstanding season coming into the Meyo Invite, displaying underrated consistency and top-tier race execution. Unfortunately, the Indiana veteran simply had a bad day at the Meyo Invite, falling to 5th place overall in a talented, but manageable field. We shouldn't look too heavily into this result, but it's probably a good thing that Williams took some time off from racing this past weekend.
16. Waleed Suliman, Junior, Ole Miss (-7 / 9)
A 7:54 3k performance for Suliman deserves some kudos. Primarily considered to be an 800/mile specialist, Suliman has shown that he has some of the best range in the NCAA this year.
Still, it doesn't really separate him from everyone else. When we add on the fact that nine others have run 3:57 or faster this season, Suliman's performances from earlier this season seemingly hold less weight.
That, however, shouldn't take away from the fact that he'll be one of the biggest and best names to watch come Nationals.
15. Carlos Villarreal, Senior, Arizona (+5 / 20)
A new mile PR of 3:56 from the Millrose Games has to feel good for the Arizona star who has established himself as a national title threat in the mile if he's healthy in March.
But that's just it...we don't know if he's healthy.
Villarreal toed the line this past weekend at the Husky Classic for the 800 meters, but back spasms forced him to record a DNF. Villarreal is already a comfortable national qualifier in the mile, so he may not run for the rest of this season until Nationals. The good news is that he'll have roughly month to get that issue straightened out.
14. Isaiah Jewett, Senior, USC (+3 / 17)
At the Clemson Tiger Paw Invite this past weekend, Jewett earned yet another statement win, taking down the Texas A&M duo of Carleton Orange and Devin Dixon (as well as Duke's Matt Wisner) in the process. Admittedly, his winning time of 1:51.74 was nothing exciting, but it shows that he can execute his race strategy at a variety of paces, something that will likely be incredibly valuable a month from now.
13. Festus Lagat, Senior, Iowa State (0 / 13)
The 800 meters has become increasingly more difficult to gauge, leaving the door open for Lagat to be considered as the national title favorite. He recorded his second 1:47 result of the season at the Iowa State Classic this past weekend, beating out Air Force veteran Michael Rhoads by 0.15 seconds. A slightly underwhelming performance at the Indiana University Relays keeps Lagat out of our top 10 (for now), but he has been excellent for the pretty much the entirety of this season.
12. George Kusche, Sophomore, Nebraska (+4 / 16)
So far this season, the Nebraska sophomore has run 1:49.99 (800), 3:57.93 (mile), and 7:50.93 (3000). He has out-run guys like Talem Franco, the Washington duo of Tanner and Nading, and defeated JUCO star (and soon to be Iowa State Cyclone) Wesley Banguria in the 3000 meters. In reality, Kusche really isn't that far off from guys like Tuntivate and Adams. His seasonal bests compared to theirs are separated by only a tick.
11. Kieran Tuntivate, Senior, Harvard (+7 / 18)
10. Ryan Adams, Senior, Furman (-3 / 7)
We spoke about this in our First Thoughts article, but Adams and Tuntivate are both having breakout seasons...and they're doing so in a very similar way. Each man has run 7:49 and 3:57 so far this season, displaying unreal range that we never knew was there. Admittedly, the depth in the 3000 meters and the growing depth of the mile makes these results a little less impactful, but it shouldn't take away from the fact that they're displaying high-level range and doing so with a consistency that hasn't been matched by many.
9. Yared Nuguse, Junior, Notre Dame (-3 / 6)
I hate that we have to push Nuguse back in our rankings, especially after he ran 7:46 for 3000 meters at the Meyo Invite. But when you look at the range and performances that others have displayed, I'm not sure we can justify a ranking higher than this...at least not for now.
The unreal depth of this year's 3000 meters suddenly dilutes the significance of this kind of time. The Notre Dame star may have run 7:46, but that's only the #5 best time in the NCAA this season.
Could Nuguse still win a national title? Definitely. Will he run a fast mile at ACC's later this season? Probably. Can he still move up in the rankings, maybe as far as the top spot? Absolutely.
8. Oliver Hoare, Senior, Wisconsin (-6 / 2)
It's absurd to think that Hoare could run 3:56, finish 2nd at the Millrose Games and somehow fall in the rankings. Still, that time doesn't really separate him from a mile field that now has a total of 10 men who have run under 3:58 this season.
7. Cooper Teare, Junior, Oregon (+1 / 8)
Yet another impressive performance for the Oregon superstar. Teare stuck his neck into a 3k race that was loaded with Bowerman Track Club professionals. That, however, didn't seem to phase Teare who ran 7:46 and finished as the top collegiate overall (defeating BTC's Sean McGorty in the process). When you pair that with his 3:55 DMR mile split, then it's clear that Teare will be bringing standout firepower to the national meet this year.
6. Geordie Beamish, Senior, Northern Arizona (+8 / 14)
His 3:56 mile at the Millrose Games paired with an incredible 7:44 3k result this past weekend puts Beamish into the "He could win NCAA gold in whatever event he chooses" category. His slightly underwhelming 5k performance from a few weeks ago was enough to hold him out of our top five, but make no mistake, Beamish has scary good middle distance speed as evidenced by his recent mile result and last year's wicked finishing kick to win the national title over Hoare.
5. James West, Rs. Senior, Oregon (+10 / 15)
One of the more overlooked performances of the weekend was James West recording a mind-boggling double. The Oregon veteran ran 7:47 for 3000 meters at the Husky Classic, then doubled back the next day to win the men's mile in a jaw-dropping time of 3:57. The range, the fitness, the ability to double effectively...gosh, it's hard not to like.
West has also run 1:49 (800), 2:23 (1000), and split 2:53 for 1200 meters this season. No one in the NCAA is showing this kind of range and consistency right now.
4. Luis Grijalva, Rs. Sophomore, Northern Arizona (+6 / 10)
A (converted) 3:58 mile, a 13:29 5k, and now a 7:43 3k result at Boston (and a win). Luis Grijalva has reached the elite tier of the NCAA and truthfully, I'm not sure what else we can say about him. The NAU ace has simply been incredible and often times under appreciated. He is very much the future of NCAA distance running.
3. Edwin Kurgat, Senior, Iowa State (+2 / 5)
Not much to say here. Kurgat's 7:49 for 3000 meters at the Millrose Games was on par with expectations, but his 3:58 mile at the Iowa State Classic was an extremely encouraging sign of speed development. That should come in handy at Nationals where the races will likely be tactical.
2. Tyler Day, Rs. Senior, Northern Arizona (+2 / 4)
His 13:16 indoor 5k was outstanding, but I had questions about how Day would be able to handle a shorter distance like the 3000 meters. Of course, any doubts were set aside this past weekend as Day and his teammates powered through the Boston University track, leaving Day with a time of 7:45 (behind Grijalva and Beamish). The 3000 meters is so unbelievably deep this year, so it's hard to say how this performance will translate to the national stage. Still, this if the first time that we've seen Day be nationally relevant in an event shorter than the 5000 meters. He should be extremely encouraged with this performance as he heads back to Flagstaff.
1. Joe Klecker, Rs. Senior, Colorado (0 / 1)
Let's just keep this brief and simple. Klecker has now run a 4:01 mile at 5300 feet of altitude (converted to 3:55), ran 7:47 for 3000 meters to beat Edwin Kurgat and finish 2nd at the Millrose Games, and recently ran 13:34 for 5000 meters to soundly defeat a deep 5k field at the Husky Classic. There's not much else you can out of this guy.
Sam Ellis (Princeton)
Alex Ostberg (Stanford)
Michael Rhoads (Air Force)
Morgan Beadlescomb (Michigan State)
Peter Seufer (Virginia Tech)
Talem Franco (BYU)
Sam Tanner (Washington)
Kigen Chemadi (Middle Tennessee State)
Cameron Griffith (Arkansas)
John Rivera (Ole Miss)
JUST MISSED (in no order)
Abdi Nur (Northern Arizona)
Roshon Roomes (Iowa State)
Takieddine Hedeilli (Texas Tech)
Dustin Nading (Washington)
Sam Tanner (Washington)
Kigen Chemadi (Middle Tennessee State)
Cameron Griffith (Arkansas)
John Rivera (Ole Miss)
Jackson Mestler (Oregon)
Matthew Schadler (Indiana)
Diego Zarate (Virginia Tech)
Jacob Heslington (BYU)
Ari Klau (Virginia)
HONORABLE MENTIONS (in no order)
Tanner Anderson (Washington)
Gilbert Boit (Arkansas)
Jack Rowe (Washington)
Kasey Knevelbaard (Florida State)
Jacob Choge (Middle Tennessee State)
Daniel Nixon (Iowa State)
Mick Stanovsek (Washington)
Charlie Hunter (Oregon)
Ryan Raff (Northern Arizona)
Justin Pacifico (Florida)
Luis Peralta (Oregon)
Talem Franco (BYU)
Theo Quax (Northern Arizona)
Blaise Ferro (Northern Arizona)
Ben Veatch (Indiana)