XC Top 50: Week 4 (9/30)


(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

50. Noah Affolder, Sophomore, Syracuse (-3 / 47)

49. Emmanuel Rotich, Tulane, Senior (-11 / 38)

48. Farah Karimabdul, Junior, Ole Miss (-3 / 45)

47. Kigen Chemadi, Senior, Mid. Tenn. State (-14 / 33)

I would be more concerned about Chemadi's absence if Choge was racing. However, it looks like Middle Tennessee is opting to hold out their top two runners until later in the season.

46. Clayton Young, Rs. Senior, BYU (-12 / 34)

There are a handful of guys we haven't seen race this season, but for the most part, we know that they are healthy and still training (Kiprop, Klecker, etc). However, we don't know what's going on with Clayton Young. He has yet to race this season, leaving us to wonder if he's healthy or not.

45. Miler Haller, Rs. Junior, Boise State (-8 / 37)

Haller posted a respectable 26th place finish at Nuttycombe, but 37th may have been a bit too generous. Still, Haller will be a key low-stick for the Broncos this season as they seek a podium finish.

44. Mickey Davey, Senior, Air Force (-12 / 32)

It seems almost unfair to drop Davey this far in the rankings after a 20th place finish at Nuttycombe. However, between the athletes who didn't race this weekend, the breakout performances, and other meets outside of Wisconsin, it's tough to keep anyone at the perfect spot. We will likely give Davey a bit more cushion in our future rankings.

43. Olin Hacker, Junior, Wisconsin (Unranked)

Hacker has to be one of the most exciting names of the 2018 season. After not racing throughout the 2017-2018 academic year, Hacker has returned to give his Badger teammates a scoring boost. Hacker won the Badger Classic and proceeded to finish 19th at Nuttycombe. His remergence into the Wisconsin lineup could help his team get to the podium.

42. Caleb Webb, Junior, Portland (Unranked)

After losing Jeff Thies to graduation, Portland needed someone else to step up and act as their new low-stick. Luckily, Webb seems to be that guy after finishing 17th at Nuttycombe. I'd like to see a bit more from Webb before we give him a better ranking, but this was a great start to his season.

41. Aaron Templeton, Rs. Senior, Furman (0 / 41)

After graduating numerous veteran scorers, Furman will look to lean on Templeton this season. The redshirt senior posted a respectable 4th place finish at Joe Piane. We'll get a better idea of his talent later this season.

40. Conner Mantz, Rs. Sophomore, BYU (-5 / 35)

Mantz got the job done with a 5th place finish at Joe Piane. The competition wasn't as challenging as what we saw in Wisconsin, but it's a nice result this early in the season. We have to push him back in the rankings for the new names we saw at Wisconsin.

39. Eduardo Herrera, Sophomore, Colorado (0 / 39)

An 18th place finish is about what we expected for Herrera. He's an exciting young talent who has the potential to post even stronger performances.

38. Jaret Carpenter, Junior, Purdue (+4 / 42)

We saw got to see peak Jaret Carpenter this past spring when he ran a personal best of 13:44. I was a bit skeptical about how he would handle the big stage, but finishing 16th at Nuttycombe is an encouraging performance. If Carpenter is successful, Purdue will be successful.

37. Yusuke Uchikoshi, Rs. Senior, Boise State (Unranked)

We were skeptical about Uchikoshi after a rough 2017 cross country season. Luckily, those troubles seem to be behind him (for now) after placing 12th at Nuttycombe this past weekend. After last year, we're staying cautious with his ranking, but this is someone who could certainly be in the All-American conversation.

36. Peter Seufer, Senior, Virginia Tech (-5 / 31)

Seufer took home the win at Paul Short, but the competition wasn't anything like what we saw at Nuttycombe and Joe Piane. He may drop in the rankings, but that has nothing to do with his performance.

35. Brent Demarest, Rs. Senior, Virginia (-5 / 30)

34. Ben Veatch, Junior, Indiana (-6 / 28)

Did not race with team at Nuttycombe Invite.

33. Geordie Beamish, Rs. Senior, Northern Arizona (-6 / 27)

It wasn't the most exciting day for Beamish who finished 25th at Nuttycombe. It was a solid overall performance, but I think he has more to give (which is a scary thing to think about when you consider this NAU roster).

32. Andrew Jordan, Junior, Iowa State (-13 / 19)

It was a bit of a rough day for Jordan who dropped to 31st overall at Nuttycombe. I think we can all agree that he's better than 31st, so we won't penalize him to the point where he's outside of the top 40. Hopefully he can rebound at Pre-Nats.

31. Ashenafi Hatte, Junior, Oklahoma State (Unranked)

We were aware of Oklahoma State recruiting JUCO transfers, but we didn't have a great idea of how good they were. This past weekend, Ashenafi Hatte introduced himself to the rest of the NCAA with a huge 13th place finish at Nuttycombe. Hassan Abdi may be gone, but the Cowboys now have a new low-stick to help carry their team. If Hatte can continue to produce results like that, he'll rapidly improve in our rankings.

30. Nadeel Wildschutt, Sophomore, Coast. Carolina (-4 / 26)

29. Steven Fahy, Senior, Stanford (-4 / 25)

Did not race with team at Stanford Invite.

28. Jonathan Davis, Junior Illinois (-10 / 18)

Did not race with team at Nuttycombe Invite.

27. John Dressel, Senior, Colorado (+9 / 36)

After dealing with an injury throughout the entirety of last year, I wasn't sure what to expect from Dressel. Luckily, the Colorado ace seems to be fit and ready to go after finishing 11th at Nuttycombe. He'll improve in our rankings with more performances like that.

26. Azaria Kirwa, Senior, Liberty (-11 / 15)

25. Alex Ostberg, Rs. Junior, Stanford (-11 / 14)

Did not race with team at Stanford Invite.

24. Lawrence Kipkoech, Rs. Senior, Campbell (-7 / 17)

Did not race with team at Stanford Invite.

23. Emmanuel Roudolff-Levisse, Junior, Portland (-13 / 10)

It was a tough day for Roudolff-Levisse who fell back to 39th overall. This isn't representative of his actual talent, so expect him to jump back into the top 15 once he finds his groove.

22. Peter Lomong, Senior, Northern Arizona (+7 / 29)

I was cautious about Lomong entering this season. His track times weren't all that impressive and I was worried we were still going to carry the hype of his 8th place finish at Nationals into 2018. Of course, Lomong blew away my expectations by finishing 7th this past weekend at Nuttycombe. I'd like to see him do that on a more consistent basis, but this was a step in the right direction.

21. Oliver Hoare, Junior, Wisconsin (0 / 21)

Finishing 15th at Nuttycombe perfectly matches Hoare's ranking. He'll be incredibly valuable to his team this fall as he looks to prove that his 1500 title last spring was no fluke.

20. Connor McMillan, Rs. Senior, BYU (+2 / 22)

I don't think anyone was too surprised to see McMillan at the top of the results for Joe Piane. There weren't many low-sticks out of the BYU roster who could truly threaten McMillan. It's encouraging to see him get a win, but that's about what I expected.

19. Cole Rockhold, Senior, Colorado State (+5 / 24)

It's hard to dislike Rockhold. Between his leadership, consistency, range, fast times, and strong finishes, Rockhold may be one of the best all-around distance runners in the NCAA. He brings a little bit of everything to the table. He finished 9th this weekend at the Nuttycombe Invite to help lead the Rams past a strong group of teams.

18. Blaise Ferro, Rs. Sophomore, Northern Arizona (Unranked)

We knew NAU was deep and we knew Ferro had talent (evident by his 13:50 PR), but to finish 8th at Wisconsin? Against some of the best competition in the nation? That's wildly impressive. With Ferro having those kind of performances, NAU doesn't need Hasty or Baxter to win the national title.

17. Jacob Choge, Junior, Middle Tennessee State (-5 / 12)

I would be more concerned about Choge's absence if Chemadi was racing. However, it looks like Middle Tennessee is opting to hold out their top two runners until later in the season.

16. Aidan Tooker, Junior, Syracuse (0 / 16)

15. Nick Hauger, Senior, Portland (+8 / 23)

Hauger is a top-tier low-stick, and we knew that entering the season. However, his 6th place finish establishes the idea that he could be an elite ace. With Roudolff-Levisse having a slightly sub-par performance, Hauger stepped up in a huge way.

14. Luis Grijalva, Sophomore, Northern Arizona (+26 / 40)

The NAU sophomore had high expectations which he shattered this past weekend. Grijalva finished 5th overall in a loaded Nuttycomeb field. I'd like to see another race like this before we give him a top 10 ranking, but his race was awfully impressive.

13. Joe Klecker, Rs. Junior, Colorado (-2 / 11)

Did not run race with team at Nuttycombe

12. Alfred Chelanga, Senior, Alabama (-3 / 9)

Finishing 10th at Nuttycombe is solid and about what I expected from Chelanga. It may not meet his ranking, but I like where he's at relative to other competitors.

11. Robert Brandt, Senior, UCLA (+2 / 13)

Brandt was the winner at the Stanford Invite over a deep field, but he ran unattached. Is this a sign that he'll be redshirting the 2018 season? When you consider all of their young talent that return next year, it's very possible.

10. Rory Linkletter, Rs. Senior, BYU (-3 / 7)

Linkletter dropped back to 10th at the Joe Piane Invite in a race that was most likely dominated by BYU. I'm not putting too much stock in this apparently off day. He's better than that and we'll see him return to peak form at Pre-Nats.

9. Vincent Kiprop, Senior, Alabama (-3 / 6)

Did not run with team at Nuttycombe.

8. James Sugira, Freshman, Eastern Kentucky (+42 / 50)

We knew his credentials and we knew his potential, but I'm not sure many people outside of Eastern Kentucky saw this performance coming. A 4th place finish at Nuttycombe further solidifies his win at Commodore Classic.

7. Edwin Kurgat, Junior, Iowa State (+13 / 20)

We knew he was good, but my goodness was that a great race from Edwin Kurgat. While others faltered, Kurgat stepped up to earn the runner-up spot at Nuttycombe. I still want to see a bit more from him before we bring him up in the title conversation, but this was certainly a step in the right direction.

6. Gilbert Kigen, Senior, Alabama (-1 / 5)

It was a slightly underwhelming finish from Kigen who placed 12th in a deep field at Nuttycombe. That's still a great result, but I think some people were expecting a bit more from him.

5. Amon Kemboi, Sophomore, Campbell (+3 / 8)

4. Tyler Day, Junior, Northern Arizona (-2 / 2)A 3rd place finish against this level of competition is impressive. He didn't win, but he fought with the top group and secured bronze. I imagine most people will still have him in the individual title conversation.

3. Morgan McDonald, Rs. Senior, Wisconsin (+1 / 4)

This was a massive statement win. Some questioned what kind of impact McDonald would have in his final senior season after taking so much time off from collegiate competition. Of course, McDonald quieted all the doubters by dominating the Nuttycombe Invite field to take the win. In the eyes of many, he is someone who could win the national title.

2. Grant Fisher, Senior, Stanford (+1 / 3)

Did not run with team at Stanford Invite.

1. Matthew Baxter, Senior, Northern Arizona (0 / 1)

Did not run with team at Nuttycombe.


Farah Karimabdul (Ole Miss)

Noah Affolder (Syracuse)


Tanner Anderson (Washington)

Cooper Teare (Oregon)

Morgan Beadlescomb (Michigan State)

Casey Comber (Villanova)

Garrett Reynolds (UCLA)

JUST MISSED (in no order)

Tanner Anderson (Washington)

Garrett Reynolds (UCLA)

Morgan Beadlescomb (Michigan State)

Cooper Teare (Oregon)

Paul Roberts (Wyoming)

Daniel Carney (BYU)

Dan Curts (Iowa State)

Lachlan Cook (Virginia)

Conor Lundy (Princeton)

Gilbert Boit (Arkansas)

Kevin James (Syracuse)

Joe Dragon (Syracuse)

Reuben Kiprono (Portland)

Waleed Suliman (Ole Miss)

Christian Ricketts (Southern Utah)

Festus Lagat (Iowa State)

Kyle Mau (Indiana)

Aidan Reed (Southern Utah)

WHO TO WATCH (in no order)

Tom Nobles (Charlotte)

Mihret Coulter (Charlotte)

Jesse Reiser (Illinois)

Thomas Ratcliffe (Stanford)

Colin Abert (Penn State)

Iliass Aouani (Syracuse)

Sam Worley (Texas)

Chandler Tiegen (Washington State)

Paul Hogan (UMass Lowell)

Curt Eckstein (Purdue)

Clayson Shumway (BYU)

Emmanuel Cheboson (Louisville)

Abraham Chirchir (UT-Rio Grande Valley)

Jackson Metsler (Oregon)

Addison DeHaven (Boise State)

Thomas Pollard (Iowa State)

Casey Comber (Villanova)

Ryan Forsyth (Colorado)


Blaise Ferro (Northern Arizona)

There were plenty of signs to let us know that Blaise Ferro had legitimate talent, but did you expect him to place 8th and defeat some of your favorite collegiate distance runners at one of the biggest meets of the year?


Morgan McDonald (Wisconsin)

On his home course during his senior year, Morgan McDonald pulled off the win over a stacked field. He took the individual title comfortably after not racing cross country since 2017. How could he not win ROTW?


  • Teare and Anderson were dropped from the rankings to no fault of their own. Anderson ran well at Beantown, but there were too many new names who had great races. They deserved a spot on our list. Until Teare races, we have to keep him out of the Top 50.

  • Many top names at Nuttycombe may not have earned a spot in our Top 50. In fact, they may have defeated a few individuals who are still in our rankings. Consistency is the most important factor of rankings and we look at the entire season as a whole when we make our updates. If you (or your favorite runners) didn't make it into our Top 50 this week, they still have a chance if they run well enough in the future.