Predictions & Previews: UW Preview & Nittany Lion Challenge



UW Preview

800

The shortest distance that we'll be covering is admittedly the least exciting event from a collegiate point of view. Still, there are slew of strong names scattered throughout this field. With professionals like Clayton Murphy and Andy Phillips entered to race, they could potentially drag this field to some fast times.

As far as collegiate athletes go, the main name to watch should be Kinsly Smith, the senior out of Gonzaga. With a personal best of 1:51, he is above and beyond some of the other names in this field. A bad day for him would be a great day for a lot of his other competitors.

Kyler Sager of Western Washington is the other collegiate that you need to keep your eye on. His personal best of 1:54.9 isn't mind-blowing, but when you add on a PR of 2:28 in the 1k, Sager becomes a formidable opponent.

FINAL PREDICTIONS (COLLEGE ONLY)

3. Christian Parr (George Fox)

2. Kyler Sager (Western Washington)

1. Kinsly Smith (Gonzaga)

1000

The 1k should be very exciting this year mainly because there are so many big-name individuals who could potentially make their season debut. Freshmen superstars Reed Brown (Oregon) and Brandon McGorty (Stanford) will step onto the track as collegiates for the first time in their careers. Brown is, of course, known for his 1:48/3:59 high school PR's while McGorty is better equipped for this distance with personal bests of 1:48/2:24/4:13 from high school. McGorty may have the edge over Brown in this race, but both are plenty talented enough to finish the day as the top collegiate if everything goes right.

Along with Reed Brown, we'll hopefully get to see a slew of Oregon's best such as Austin Tomagno, Mick Stanovsek, and Jack Yearian. However, the most exciting Ducks will most likely be English recruit James West and Penn State transfer Jaxson Hoey. West owns times of 1:49 and 3:39 (1500) while Hoey is coming off of an injury-plagued year at Penn State where he was still able to put together times of 1:53 and 3:50 (1500).

We also can't ignore David Ribich, the D2 star from Western Oregon who has set out on a mission to show that he just as good as some of the top talent in D1. His personal bests of 1:49/2:28/3:41 and multiple experiences racing on this track could make him a strong sleeper pick for this race.

Yet, as far as college athletes go, Colby Gilbert is probably best suited for this event. The Washington veteran has PR's of 3:40 (1500) and 2:25 (1k), the most experience of anyone in this field, and gets to race on his home track. It will be hard to pick against him in this one...

FINAL PREDICTIONS (COLLEGE ONLY)

6. Reed Brown (Oregon)

5. James West (Oregon)

4. Austin Tomagno (Oregon)

3. David Ribich (Western Oregon)

2. Brandon McGorty (Stanford)

1. Colby Gilbert (Washington)

Mile

The mile field is set to be an interesting one as a variety of pros are scattered through the field while many long-distance studs attempt to go down in distance.

As you first read through the entries in this field, you can't help but notice Oregon's Tanner Anderson, Bryan Fernandez, Travis Neumann, and Levi Thomet on the performance list. These Ducks are typically found running distances no shorter than 3000 meters, so I'm not really expecting a lot of monster performances from them in this race.

Jack Yearian and Jackson Mestler are the other Oregon athletes entered in this race. They have a bit more experience running the mile and could do well in a field that isn't overwhelmed with the PAC-12 talent that they are typically used to seeing.

Other distance-oriented talents like Sam Wharton (Stanford), Fred Huxham (Washington), Nick Hauger (Portland), Noah Schutte (Portland), and John Whelan (Washington State) will all drop down in distance in an attempt to gain some speed work before they pursue events such as the 3k and 5k.

If you're looking to pick an athlete that is a bit more attuned to the mile distance, Stanford's Patrick Perrier might be a good option. With a history of strong and consistent performances in the middle distances, Perrier's PR's of 3:44 (1500) and 2:25 (1k) might be enough to emerge as the top collegiate.

FINAL PREDICTIONS (COLLEGE ONLY)

7. Tanner Anderson (Oregon)

6. Jackson Mestler (Oregon)

5. Noah Schutte (Portland) 4. Nick Hauger (Portland)

3. Jack Yearian (Oregon)

2. Fred Huxham (Washington)

1. Patrick Perrier (Stanford)

3000

The 3k could be one of the more surprising races of the day. The field is full of recently-turned pros who could make this an extremely fast race. There are many top collegiates set to race such as Nick Hauger (Portland), Travis Neumann (Oregon), and Sam Wharton (Stanford). Of course, as you have probably already noticed, those three guys are also entered in the mile. Based on the other other entries from this meet, I would be surprised if these guys actually toed the line for the 3000 as most teams appear to be trying some off-distance racing.

As we delve deeper into these entries, I can't help but like Gonzaga's Jake Perrin who has PR's of 8:09 and 14:04. He may not be from a flashy Power Five program or have an elite resume, but he's certainly someone to watch out for.

I'm also a big fan of the Alaska Anchorage men. They always have some solid talent and produce some great results. If you're looking for someone in particular, be sure to keep an eye out on Henry Cheseto who owns times of 8:11 and 14:08.

Finally, I'll be watching Stanford's Isaac Cortes in this race. Throughout his freshman year, Cortes was mainly thought of as a middle distance stud who could be competitive in anything from the 800 to the mile. Now, Cortes is coming off of a very strong cross country season where he played a huge role. His endurance is definitely at an all-time high so this race may not be as a much of an "off-distance" event for him like many might assume.

FINAL PREDICTIONS (COLLEGE ONLY)

5. Tristan Peloquin (Portland)

4. Patrick Perrier (Stanford) <-- only if he doesn't run the mile

3. Henry Cheseto (Alaska Anchorage)

2. Isaac Cortes (Stanford)

1. Jake Perrin (Gonzaga)

Nittany Lion Challenge

800

Much like the field at the UW Preview, the Nittany Lion Challenge won't have any fireworks in the 800 as only seven individuals are entered to race, one of whom is running unattached. Bucknell will be fielding four men from their mid-distance team which includes Scott Gulizio who owns a personal best of 1:51. It's tough to say if there is anyone who will really challenge as Gulizio as he seems to clearly be the best in the field.

FINAL PREDICTIONS (COLLEGE ONLY)

3. Ryan Scott (Maryland)

2. David Frering (Bucknell)

1. Scott Gulizio (Bucknell)

1000

The 1k field will prove to be a bit more exciting. Although we won't have the exciting matchup of Joe White vs Isaiah Harris that we saw last year, we will get to see Penn State sophomore Domenic Perretta and Iowa State sophomore Roshon Roomes go head-to-head. Perretta had stand-out winter and spring track seasons last year as a freshman with times of 1:47/2:23/3:46. Meanwhile, Roomes had a breakout season of his own last spring where he dropped times of 1:47 and 2:26. There's no reason to doubt that either of these individuals won't be at the top of their game this weekend which should make for an exciting matchup. However, with Perretta on his home track, he may have the advantage.

Penn State's Jordan Makins is another 800 specialist who could have a strong impact in the 1k this Satuday. With PR's of 1:48 and 2:22, Makins could be a great sleeper pick if you're looking for a potential upset.

FINAL PREDICTIONS (COLLEGE ONLY)

3. Jordan Makins (Penn State)

2. Roshon Roomes (Iowa State)

1. Dom Perretta (Penn State)

Mile

One of the more underrated events of the day is the mile which will feature some star names. Names such as Colin Abert (Penn State) and Jonathan Green (Georgetown) are the names to watch on paper, but Isaiah Harris has been capturing some attention as of late with an entry into the mile. We've seen guys like John Lewis (Clemson) move up to the mile this indoor season and have some success. Could Isaiah Harris take the nation by surprise and drop something fast?

If Harris wants to stand out in this race, he'll need to get past a 4:04 miler in Green and a 4:03 miler in Abert. Georgetown also has plenty of other underrated talent that could have an impact such as Jack Salisbury and Reilly Bloomer while Penn State will also field their other long-distance Tim McGowan who qualified for NCAA's this fall.

Yet, maybe the one name that we're all forgetting about is Ben Malone. The 'Nova veteran is one of the best tactical runners on the east coast, boasts experience at outdoor Nationals, and owns monster PR's of 1:48 and 3:39 (from June 2016). In a race like this, don't be surprised if Malone ends up as the victor.

FINAL PREDICTIONS (COLLEGE ONLY)

6. Reilly Bloomer (Georgetown)

5. Isaiah Harris (Penn State)

4. Jack Salisbury (Georgetown)

3. Colin Abert (Penn State)

2. Jonathan Green (Georgetown)

1. Ben Malone (Villanova)

3000

This race will most likely turn into the Georgetown vs Villanova show. The Hoyas will field high-level veterans Amos Bartelsmeyer and Scott Carpenter while the Wildcats are set to run up-and-coming stars Andrew Marston and Casey Clinger. In a race like this, Bartelsmeyer and Carpenter have the better resume and Carpenter should be the favorite to win it all. However, don't dismiss the recent success we've seen from this Villanova duo, especially Marston. They will certainly make things interesting and potentially push this field to a fast time.

Others like Ben Malone and Jonathan Green are also entered in this race, but I imagine that they will pursue the mile rather than this race.

Keep an eye out for Will Bordash (Bucknell), Charles Cooper (Georgetown), Paul Power (Villanova), and Patrick Hanley (Maryland).

FINAL PREDICTIONS (COLLEGE ONLY)

6. Paul Power (Villanova)

5. Will Bordash (Bucknell)

4. Casey Clinger (Villanova)

3. Amos Bartelsmeyer (Georgetown)

2. Andrew Marston (Villanova)

1. Scott Carpenter (Georgetown)

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