D2 Outdoor Top 20: Preseason (Men)


KEY

(Unranked)

Was not ranked the week before


(#/#)

First number indicates the change in a runner's ranking from week prior

Second number indicates where the runner was ranked last week

20. Christian Noble, Lee (Tenn.)

Noble was the fastest man in terms of time on the cross country course this past season. He redshirted indoors and after an early performance of 9:00 in the steeplechase, the redshirting certainly looks to have paid off. He’s likely already booked his ticket to the national meet and he should be a force when he gets there.


19. Jack Johnson, Chico State

Johnson is the next highest returner from the 3000 meter steeplechase. The Wildcat was 7th at last year’s championships. He has run 8:59 before and he spent the winter training instead of racing. He should be a contender for the top spot barring some kind of injury.


18. Gidieon Kimutai, Missouri Southern

Kimutai is another freshman who makes our list here. He finished 4th at the Cross Country National Championships as well as 4th in the 5000 meters at the indoor national meet. We’ve already seen success from a Missouri Southern freshman before (Vincent Kiprop), so this isn’t too much of a surprise. He’ll likely jump up to the 10,000 where I think he has the most success, and also run the 5000. He ran 14:10 at the national meet which was the best time of his career so far, meaning he’ll likely improve this spring.


17. Pierre-Louis Detourbe, Simon Fraser

Detourbe ran for Cal Baptist last year when he finished 6th in the 3000 meter steeplechase at the national meet. He’s the highest finishing returner of the eight All-Americans. Individually, he didn’t have a successful indoor meet, but that was largely due to being in a volatile mile prelim. He was the 1200 leg for the DMR team that placed 2nd, though. He’s run 9:00 for the steeple before and I think he should be able to dip underneath that barrier if things go right training-wise.


16. Marcelo Laguera, CSU-Pueblo

The cross country national champion had to find his way onto this list. He redshirted the indoor season, but has already made his mark on the outdoor season as he has run 14:31 in basically a solo effort at altitude. He was 7th in the 10,000 at the D2 National Championships last outdoor season and he should be one of the favorites in that event going into outdoors.


15. Ayman Zahafi, TAMU-Kingsville

Zahafi was another surprise finisher when he crossed the line 3rd in the 800 at the indoor nation al meet. The sophomore ran his personal best at the perfect time and because of it, success has come his way. He has only ever run the 800 before, so it’s unclear if he will be trying anything different come outdoors.


14. Devundrick Walker, CSU-Pueblo

Walker had one of the best DMR legs in the national meet as he brought his team into 2nd place through the 800 meter leg. He also came back to finish 6th in the 800. His career best of 1:48 has come during the outdoor season, but his best national finish in the event is 6th. He’ll be looking to better his placing in his final season as he continues to refine his talent.


13. Victor Moreau, Academy of Art

Moreau finally got his first All-American honor by finishing 4th in the 3000. He set personal bests in the 800, mile, and 3000 during the indoor season. I think we will see that same success in the outdoor season. He should break the 3:50 barrier and find his way back to the National Championships.


12. Benoit Campion, American International

The freshman finished 5th during the indoor campaign and gave us another American International athlete that is seeing immediate success within the program. He’ll likely be focusing on the 1500, but he has run 1:53 before in his young career so we could see him work on that as well.


11. Brett Meyer, Fort Hays State

Meyer is only #11 on this list because others had stronger indoor championship meets than him. That being said, Meyer is still considered a mile/1500 favorite this outdoor season. He was 4th in the distance last year at Nationals, and he has the speed to even compete in the 800 if he felt like it.


10. Rowan Doherty, Simon Fraser

Doherty is coming into his own in 2019. A strong mile anchor to help the Simon Fraser team finish 2nd in the DMR, followed by a 7th place finish in the 3000 the next day at the national meet, tells us that he is fit heading into the outdoor season. He’ll likely be focusing on the 1500 and we will see if there is a longer discipline that suits him even more.


9. Josh Hoskinson, Colorado Mines

A surprise (to most people) was seeing Hoskinson finish 3rd in the 5000 meters at the indoor national meet. The result showed us that Hoskinson can be considered as a legitimate threat in longer events. Unfortunately, he didn’t bounce back in the 3000 the next day, leading us to believe that his ideal racing distances may be the 5000 or even 10,000 meters. Whether or not that move is made this upcoming outdoor season is unclear, but it is worth looking at early on in the season.


8. Taylor Stack, Western Colorado

Stack walked away with two All-American honors. One came in the 5000 and the other came in the 3000. As we move into the outdoor season, Stack should focus on the same distances. He’ll likely be a threat in the 5000 while he looks to get stronger for the 3000 steeple. Stack was trending the right way before the indoor championship meet, and I think we will see that continue during outdoors.


7. Daniel Wallis, Queens (N.C.)

Wallis shocked some people at the Indoor National Championships as he finished 2nd in the mile and then came back and was an 8th place finisher in the 3000. Wallis has run strong times before, so we were just waiting for him to race well at the championship level. Heading into outdoors, we should see him in the 1500 and possibly even the 5000 given his indoor success.

6. Dennis Mbuta, Grand Valley State

This freshman came onto the scene in 2019 with a strong indoor campaign that helped show us that Grand Valley was not just a long distance program. He finished 2nd in the 800 at the indoor national meet behind Staines and ran 1:49.24 during the regular season. He didn’t have the same success in the DMR, as he was stalked by other teams while on the anchor leg. Regardless, Mbuta is poised for a strong outdoor season.


5. Felix Wammetsberger, Queens (N.C.)

The current mile champion finally found his way into the final that ended with some good luck (and great tactics). He was able to find his way into the lead spot with 50 meters to go and held off his competitors, one including his teammate. You should see Wammetsberger back on the big stage in May as he looks to pull off mile/1500 double gold.


4. Zach Panning, Grand Valley State

The reigning 5000 meter outdoor national champion is back to defend that title. He came up just short a few weeks ago, trying to hold off the talented Adams State stars. If we learned anything about Panning, it's that he’s in great shape and should run personal bests in both the 5000 and 10,000.


3. Elias Gedyon, Adams State

Gedyon is fresh off his first national title in the 3000 and after a couple of 3rd place finishes (2018 outdoor, 2019 indoor) and a 5th place finish (2018 indoor), it’ll be interesting to see where he decides to place his focus on this outdoor season. After not winning the national title in the mile, maybe we will see him make a jump in distance?


2. Sydney Gidabuday, Adams State

Gidabuday secured his seventh national title during the indoor season. I think the question at hand going into the outdoor season is what will he bring to the table in the 5000 and 10,000. He hasn’t won an outdoor national title since the 5000 meters as a freshman and hasn’t really come close to winning in the 10,000. I’m sure he’d love to rewrite that narrative.


1. Thomas Staines, CSU-Pueblo

Fresh off of his third straight 800 meter title, there seems to be no stopping Staines at the moment. To go along with that third 800 title, he also added a DMR title to his collection after anchoring CSU-Pueblo to the win with a strong mile leg. There’s a wonder if Staines will move up in distances for the fun of it this season or just focus on the 800. Given that the World Championships are this summer and he’s the fastest British man so far, staying the course might be the best option for him.

800

1. Thomas Staines (CSU-Pueblo)

2. Dennis Mbuta (Grand Valley State)

3. Devundrick Walker (CSU-Pueblo)

4. Ayman Zahafi (TAMU-Kingsville)

5. Joshua Ajero (Albany State)


1500

1. Felix Wammetsberger (Queens (N.C.))

2. Elias Gedyon (Adams State)

3. Daniel Wallis (Queens N.C.))

4. Brett Meyer (Fort Hays State)

5. Benoit Campion (American International)


3000 Steeplechase

1. Pierre-Louis Detourbe (Simon Fraser)

2. Jack Johnson (Chico State)

3. Christian Noble (Lee (Tenn.))

4. Kale Adams (Adams State)

5. Grant Colligan (Colorado Mines)


5000

1. Sydney Gidabuday (Adams State)

2. Zach Panning (Grand Valley State)

3. Josh Hoskinson (Colorado Mines)

4. Gidieon Kimutai (Missouri Southern)

5. Eddie King (Chico State)


10,000

1. Marcelo Laguera (CSU-Pueblo)

2. Zach Panning (Grand Valley State)

3. Sydney Gidabuday (Adams State)

4. Jacob Klemz (Washburn)

5. Karim Achengli (NW Missouri)