Run The Numbers: Conference Weekend

Updated: Nov 7, 2019

Run the Numbers is a new column that we will be debuting where we pull out some significant statistics from the running world. Right now, the focus will be with respect to Division One programs, with the goal of expanding into other divisions some time in the future.

3 - Number of programs that earned a perfect score at their respective conference meet this past weekend.

Those three programs were the California Baptist women, the Iona men, and the South Dakota State men. CBU won the WAC with a score of 15 points over runner-up Utah Valley who totaled a score of 69 points. The Iona men placed 1-2-3-4-5-7-8 to win the MAAC title over Siena. Only Evans Kibet of Sienna was able to break up the Iona group with his 6th place finish. The South Dakota State men claimed the Summit League Championships over rival North Dakota State by a margin of 49 points by taking the top six spots in the meet.

1 - Number of points that separated the 5th, 6th, and 7th place women’s teams at the BIG 10 Championships on Sunday.

Ohio State and Illinois both ended the meet with 144 points, with the Buckeyes winning the tie-breaker over the Illini’. Minnesota was 7th with 145 points. For good measure, the Penn State women finished 4th with 138 points, only six points ahead of Ohio State and Illinois.

372 - Number of points the top five teams in the women’s PAC-12 Championships scored combined.

400 - Number of points the University of Southern California women scored in the PAC-12 Championships.

All of the top five teams - Stanford, Washington, Utah, Colorado and Oregon - placed a combined 47 runners ahead of USC’s #1 runner. Those 47 runners make up all of the athletes who competed for the respective schools (Colorado, Stanford, and Utah all ran nine athletes).

35 - Points scored by the men of Ole Miss and by Alabama’s #4 runner at the SEC Championships.

Ole Miss and Alabama were tied through three runners, but the 4-5 combo for the Rebels scored a combined 22 points compared to the 77 scored by the backend duo from Alabama. Despite having potentially the best 1-2 duo in the country, the consistent drop-off in those final two scoring positions over the past few seasons has kept Alabama from competing with the Rebels.

49 - Seconds that Mountain West champion Weini Kelati finished ahead of runner-up (and teammate) Ednah Kurgat.

Kelati had already gapped the field by eight seconds at 1.1 kilometers into the race and had built this lead up to 31 seconds at four kilometers. Kelati is currently #2 in the TSR Individual XC rankings. What makes this even more impressive is that Kurgat currently sits at #8, meaning Kelati absolutely dominated one of the best women in the country.

3.5 - Number of seconds separating Penn and Harvard for the team title at Heps this past weekend.

These two teams finished only three points apart with Penn taking the win. Had the Quakers' #5 runner finishe 3.5 seconds slower, Penn would have added four points to their overall score and Harvard would have come away with the win.

2 - Number of points separating the women of 1st place Oklahoma State (52 points) from 2nd place Texas (54 points) and the number of points separating the women of Texas from 3rd place West Virginia (56 points) at the BIG 12 Championships. It is also the number of potential Kolas points that the Oklahoma State women may have scored after beating Texas and WVU.

There is a lot to unpack with this, but the women of Oklahoma State, Texas, West Virginia all finished within four points at the BIG 12 Championships this past weekend, with each team being separated by two points each. There were two instances where the overall standings was decided by one place.

The first instance being Oklahoma State's Molly Born (3rd) finishing one spot ahead of Texas' Kathryn Gillespie (4th). Had those two switched spots, Oklahoma State and Texas would have tied.

The second instance was Texas' Destiny Collins (6th) finishing one spot ahead of West Virginia's Candace Jones (7th). Had those two spots been flipped, then the two teams would have tied.

However, in those theoretical scenarios, the Oklahoma State women win their tie-breaker over Texas and still take the title. The same can be said for Texas and West Virginia as the Longhorns would have still won their tie-breaker and maintained their 2nd place finish.

However, now that Oklahoma State has won the title, we could see the Cowgirls earn two very important Kolas points. Texas will likely qualify for Nationals out of the South Central region. Meanwhile, the West Virginia women seem to have a realistic shot to earn an automatic qualifying spot to Nationals in a somewhat wide-open Mid-Atlantic region.

If that were to happen, the Lady Pokes would be in a very interesting position as far as national qualifying is concerned. If they can't place inside the top two of their regional meet, they might be able to earn one of the final at-large bids to NCAA's.