XC Top 25: Week 3 (9/24)


KEY

(Unranked)Was not ranked the week before.


(#/#)

First number indicates how much the team has moved in the rankings.

The second number indicates where that team was ranked the week before.

25. Eastern Kentucky Colonels (0 / 25)

24. Air Force Falcons (0 / 24)

23. Georgetown Hoyas (0/23)


22. Campbell Camels (-11 / 11)

Well...that was ugly. Kemboi and Kipkoech were phenomenal (as expected), placing 1st and 3rd overall. Unfortunately, the Camels saw a massive gap after those two. Kirui was 48th in the third scoring spot. Hunter and Kipruto finished the scoring in 63rd and 81st. Simply put, almost everyone in their lineup had a poor performance. The team finished 6th overall.


The good news is that we have seen guys like Kirui and Kipruto have better performances than that. We may have to penalize Campbell for now, but expect them to climb back up the rankings throughout October.


21. Arkansas Razorbacks (0 / 21)

We didn't see any teams truly challenge the Razorbacks at the Chile Pepper Festival, but the Razorbacks did field their top lineup. Boit, Griffith, and Murphy cruised to a top three finish (among collegiates), but their final two scorers fell off a bit. Matt Young was 18th while Ethan Moehn was 24th.


At a smaller meet, you'd expect Arkansas to have a tighter pack. I don't think this is anything to be too concerned about, but they'll need to be better at the bigger meets.


20. Charlotte 49ers (0 / 20)

19. NC State Wolfpack (0 / 19)


18. Virginia Cavaliers (-1 / 17)

The Cavs finished 4th at Beantown, 21 points behind Ole Miss. Demarest got the job done with a 7th place finish while Ernst, Corbett, and Neish were 15th, 19th, and 22nd, respectively. Unfortunately, their fifth scorer dropped to 35th overall, keeping them out of contention for a top three finish. I would usually be concerned about a vulnerable scoring spot, but top runner Lachlan Cook was not in their lineup. As long as he's healthy and racing, this team will have a lot more to give.


17. Oregon Ducks (-1 / 16)

We didn't see anything too crazy at the Oregon Preview as the Ducks once again ran a few of their top runners unattached. Portland finished ahead of Oregon in the team scoring, but it's tough to tell how seriously Coach Thomas wanted to take this meet. The good news is that Teare will be racing in an Oregon singlet this season, giving the Ducks an ace to lean on throughout 2018.


16. Ole Miss Rebels (+2 / 18)

We knew Ole Miss would be a competitive team, but they were better than expected at Beantown. We didn't expect Karimabdul to finish 4th which complemented Suliman's 10th place finish. Mark Robertson also had a huge day of his own, placing 14th.


Their top three were great, but we saw a bit of a drop off in the rest of the scoring with Coccia placing 21st and Garcia Romo finishing 28th. Those two underclassmen will need to be better, but for this being their first collegiate race in a new country, you have to be satisfied with what they produced.


Ole Miss ended the day in 3rd overall, just seven points behind Washington.


15. Washington Huskies (+7 / 22)

The Huskies traveled across the country without two of their varsity scorers and still walked away with a runner-up finish. Tanner Anderson looks like the reliable ace Washington needed after his 6th place finish at Beantown. The sophomore duo of Proctor and Hull finished 11th and 12th overall, giving the Huskies a very solid top three. Dieher and Moussa rounded out the scoring, placing 17th and 24th respectively.


The backend of their lineup will need to improve, but that shouldn't be an issue when you consider that Coach Powell didn't run Huxham or Snyder. In short, there is a lot of potential for the men from Seattle.


14. Colorado State Rams (+1 / 15)

13. Furman Paladin (+1 / 14)

12. Texas Longhorns (+1 / 13)

11. UCLA Bruins (-1 / 10)

10. Boise State Broncos (-1 / 9)


9. Syracuse Orange (+3 / 12)

Absolute dominance.


Tooker is elite, Affolder is a legit low-stick, James and Dragon may be some of the best supporting scorers in the nation, and Aouani still has a lot more to give even after a 13th place finish. Winning by 37 points against some of the nation's best is a statement race.


8. Wisconsin Badgers (0 / 8)

7. Colorado Buffaloes (0 / 7)


6. Alabama Crimson Tide (-1 / 5)

5. Portland Pilots (+1 / 6)

Nothing against Alabama, but their depth is a little finicky. With Portland finding new scorers with strong potential, the Pilots seem like the safer bet. Between Reuben Kiprono, freshman recruit Justin Hazell, Riley Osen, and so many more, there is too much upside for Portland to not be in our top five.


4. Iowa State Cyclones (0 4)

3. Stanford Cardinal (0 / 3)

2. BYU Cougars (0 / 2)

1. Northern Arizona Lumberjacks (0 / 1)

ADDED

N/A


KICKED OFF

N/A


JUST MISS (in no order)

Oklahoma State Cowboys

Middle Tennessee State Blue Raiders

Illinois Fighting Illini'

Butler Bulldogs

Michigan State Spartans

Villanova Wildcats

Utah State Aggies

Princeton Tigers

UNC Tar Heels


WHO TO WATCH (in no order)

Indiana Hoosiers

Columbia Lions

Purdue Boilermakers

Michigan Wolverines

Florida State Seminoles

Temple Owls

Penn Quakers

Liberty Flames

Army Black Knights


SURPRISE OF THE WEEK

UNC Tarheels

Yes, Campbell did struggle, but UNC came out of nowhere to finish 5th. Golebiowski and Resor secured two top 20 finishes while Brown was 27th. The back-end of their lineup needs to improve if they want to be legitimate contenders in the ACC, but this was a very exciting start for the Tar Heels. Whatever Coach Grove-McDonough did to jumpstart this team, it's working.


TEAM OF THE WEEK

Syracuse Orange

They faced four Top 25 teams, cruised to a win, established a pair of low-sticks, and kept a tight time spread. Overall, it was a very impressive performance. Now we need to start asking the uncomfortable question...is this team better than last year's?


NOTES

  • Stony Brook quietly finished 7th at the Battle in Beantown, only 15 points behind Campbell. Could they take advantage of a vulnerable Iona squad in the Northeast region this year? It's not impossible...


  • The Florida men finished 3rd at the Mountain Dew Invite behind Florida A&M and Tennessee Tech (who lost Gilbert Boit last year after he transferred to Arkansas). Does anyone else feel like the Gators have been moving backwards in the distance events since Solinsky was hired? Obviously this is a sprints-oriented program, but they should have enough talent to be more competitive than they are now.