Indoor Top 25: Update #5 (3/18) (Men) - FINAL


KEY

(Unranked)

Was not ranked during the last update.


(#/#)

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

Second number indicates where the runner was ranked during the last update.

25. Conner Mantz, Rs. Sophomore, BYU (Unranked)

Mantz turned in a strong performance for BYU in his first appearance at Indoor Nationals. Finishing 7th in the 3k right behind teammate Clayton Young and 10th in the 5k should give him loads of confidence going into outdoors. A traditional frontrunner, it was encouraging to see Mantz effectively utilize his strategy in a championship race.


24. Sam Worley, Sophomore, Texas (-5 / 19)

It was frustrating to see Worley and Texas struggle in the DMR. Even though they weren’t fresh, I expected them to at least score. In the end, Worley salvaged the meet by finishing 6th in the mile, but it was a performance that left me wanting more. As talented as Worley is, his performances at Nationals in cross country and indoors has been disappointing.


23. Edwin Kurgat, Junior, Iowa State (-13 / 10)

It wasn't a great performance for the Iowa State junior at Nationals as he fell to 9th in the 5000 meters, one spot out of an All-Americans spot. Despite the disappointing, we can't forget that he ran 13:34 earlier this season and nearly nipped Clayton Young in that same race. He's talented enough to stay inside our Top 25.


22. Vincent Kiprop, Senior, Alabama (Unranked)

Kiprop reasserted himself back into the national conversation with a 5th place performance. It will be fun to see him and Kigen remind everyone of how talented they are outdoors.


21. Connor McMillan, Rs. Senior, BYU (Unranked)

Another BYU Cougar who had a solid weekend in Birmingham, McMillan turned in an unexpected 4th place finish in the 5k while upsetting Kemboi and Kurgat in the process. He struggled in the 3k the next day, but you definitely have to be encouraged by his performance at Nationals.


20. Joe White, Rs. Senior, Georgetown (-14 / 6)

Going into Nationals, I thought the top five in the 800 were locks. I wasn’t sure what the combination was going to be, but it was clear to me that it was going to be Arop, Dixon, Hoppel, White, and Heppenstall. Because of this, it was shocking to see how far back White was from the leaders and watch him get passed by Williams in the closing stretch. It would be even more surprising if we didn’t see the senior bounce back during outdoors.


19. Cooper Williams, Rs. Sophomore, Indiana (Unranked)

Williams finally reached an 800 meter final and broke through in a big way, finishing in 5th. For the talented Hoosier, this performance has been a long time coming. He started the season brilliantly, but faded towards the end, losing to Dominic Perretta at BIG 10’s. He came back in a big way to beat White who was one of the favorites coming into Nationals. Encouraged by his big breakthrough, we might see Williams make an even bigger jump come outdoors.


18. Alex Ostberg, Junior, Stanford (Unranked)

It took three years, but it was definitely worth it to see Ostberg run in his first indoor championship. Not only did he help Stanford’s DMR team place 2nd, but he also earned four more points for the Cardinal with his 5th place finish in the 3k. You have to imagine he will be a threat during outdoors no matter what event he runs.


17. Robert Brandt, Junior, UCLA (0 / 17)

Brandt carried his momentum into NCAA's, finishing 8th in both the 5k and the 3k. As was one of four people to score in both the 3k and 5k, Brandt was one of the most consistent distance runners at the meet. He will be a big threat in the 10k come outdoors.


16. Carlos Villarreal, Junior, Arizona (+4 / 20)

It was a solid performance for one of the pre-meet favorites. With his finishing kick, he never seems to be out of the race, but he left himself too much distance to make up with a lap to go. We're hoping we get to see the Wildcat run down the field a few more times this spring.


15. Cooper Teare, Sophomore, Oregon (+6 / 21)

After running the 1200 leg in the DMR, Teare came back in a big way to finish 4th in the 3k. Oregon looks ready to make a big jump outdoors as they grow more comfortable under Coach Ben Thomas.


14. Devin Dixon, Junior, Texas A&M (-7 / 7)

All eyes were on Dixon as he took the line in the 800 final. The favorite couldn’t earn himself a title as he was unable to make up any ground in the last 100 meter. Although it was a disappointing result, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him bounce back in the next few months.


13. Amon Kemboi, Junior, Campbell (-9 / 4)

It was disappointing to see Kemboi get passed so easily at the end of the 5k, but we should commend him for putting himself out there. He still finished 6th in the 5k, but was unable to keep up in the 3k where he finished 13th (a race where he also fell). With how well Kemboi ran throughout the season in the mile, 3k, and 5k, you would expect him to have a greater impact on the national stage come outdoors.


12. Yared Nuguse, Sophomore, Notre Dame (Unranked)

I really wish we could have seen Nuguse run in the mile because he certainly would have challenged Beamish for the title, but it was exhilarating to watch him inch by Fisher in the DMR. After a surprise 2nd place finish in the DMR last year, Nuguse willed the Irish to the win in 2019. Nuguse and the rest of Notre Dame’s young team will be ones to watch on the outdoor oval.


11. Casey Comber, Junior, Villanova (Unranked)

One of the biggest surprises of the weekend was Comber running an extremely smart race in the mile to finish a shocking 2nd one spot ahead of Oliver Hoare. No one gave him much attention even after he ran 3:57 behind Waleed Suliman earlier in the season. However, he showed out in a crowded mile field. After a stellar cross country season, I’m excited to see if he can keep his momentum going into outdoors.


10. Robert Heppenstall, Senior, Wake Forest (+2 / 12)

Another NCAA Championship and another All-American performance from Heppenstall. While he is probably a little disappointed that he was unable to win his first title, he ran a smart race that earned him a 3rd place finish in the 800. I really hope he can continue his streak of All-American performances this spring.


9. Kyle Mau, Junior, Indiana (0 / 9)

Mau was an ironman, running four times and being competitive in all of them. He qualified for the mile and then helped Indiana finish 4th in the DMR on tired legs. The next day, Mau came excruciatingly close to scoring points in the mile and the 3k, placing 10th and 9th, respectively. While he didn’t score a ton of points, his consistency is commendable.


8. Clayton Young, Rs. Senior, BYU (+5 / 13)

3rd in the 5k and 6th in the 3k. I was expecting this type of performance from Kemboi or Tyler Day, but not Young. He showed poise and smarts in both races to put himself into good spots to score points for BYU.


7. Geordie Beamish, Junior, Northern Arizona (Unranked)

Take a bow Geordie Beamish! March Madness came early as Geordie Beamish took down Oliver Hoare for the mile national title. With an early kick, Beamish was able to separate himself from the field which proved to be the difference maker. He certainly validated his altitude converted time and we should pencil him in as one of the favorites in the 1500 this spring.


6. Marco Arop, Sophomore, Mississippi State (+2 / 8)

Well, you can’t say that Arop didn’t go for it. He took the lead like he did at SEC's, but he wasn’t quite able to keep it. Hoppel caught him, but it was an impressive showing from Arop to finish 2nd overall. After a breakout 2018, Arop proved that he is the real deal and should be considered as one of the favorites going into outdoors.


5. Bryce Hoppel, Junior, Kansas (+6 / 11)

The 800 lived up to expectations as it was anyone’s race with 400 left, but it was Hoppel (not Dixon, Arop, or White) who took home the title. Hoppel spoke to the media after the prelims about trying to run 1:44 in the final which was perhaps slightly unrealistic. That said, it might not be so unrealistic during outdoors if this Jayhawk continues his growth. Winning every race during his indoor season bodes well for outdoors and Hoppel could be the next collegiate 800 meter star.


4. Joe Klecker, Rs. Junior, Colorado (+1 / 5)

Klecker probably had the most impressive performance of the weekend without winning a title. The Colorado ace finished 2nd and 3rd in the 5k and 3k, respectively. Klecker more than validated his altitude converted times and proved himself as the best of the rest behind McDonald and Fisher (and maybe Hoare depending on who you ask).


3. Oliver Hoare, Junior, Wisconsin (-2 / 1)

I think I might have been Hoare’s biggest fan throughout the entire indoor season. He was running times that no one else was and he seemed unstoppable. I had high expectations for him coming into this meet and thought that he had a chance at scoring over 16 points. With that said, I think he had the most disappointing meet. I was legitimately shocked when he wasn’t able to catch Beamish in the mile. It turns out that even the best runners in the country are human too! You can’t run them in four races and expect them to compete for the win in each of them. Running the mile prelims and the 1200 leg in the DMR seemed to really hurt Hoare the next day where he finished 3rd in the mile and last in the 3k. He even looked tired in the DMR after the mile prelim. Regardless, Hoare should still be the favorite to win the 1500 during outdoors and I can’t wait to see how fast he runs this spring.


2. Grant Fisher, Rs. Junior, Stanford (0 / 2)

I posed an intriguing question during our recap of Indoor Nationals. Is Fisher the best ever to only win one NCAA title? We normally ask if someone is the best to never win a title, but I think it's interesting to think about how good Fisher has been and yet he only has one NCAA gold. His finishing kick in the DMR was one of the most exciting parts of the meet, but he wasn’t able to hold off Nuguse for the win. Fisher then couldn’t track down his rival McDonald in the 3k. I think the hardest part of watching his races is that he was excruciatingly close to winning two titles and ended up with none. Looking towards outdoors, I can’t wait to see McDonald and Fisher’s rivalry to continue. And, if I’m being honest, it would be great to see Fisher win a few battles to make the rivalry a little more competitive.


1. Morgan McDonald, Rs. Senior, Wisconsin (+2 / 3)

Well, shoot. It seems I was overthinking the top spot a bit. After Fisher beat McDonald in the middle of the season, I dropped McDonald to #3 and kept him there for the rest of the season. That appears to have been a mistake. McDonald looked like the class of the NCAA at Nationals, destroying the field in the 5k and the 3k. His ability to kick past Kemboi and Klecker in the 5k was impressive, but his kick to hold off Fisher was incredible. The cross country champ proved that his performance on his home course wasn’t just a fluke. With three titles this year, McDonald’s season is already better than anyone post-Cheserek. If he can add two more titles this spring, then he will have one of the best single year’s we have ever seen from a distance runner.