Home Sweet Home: Colorado State will kick off the 2005 outdoor campaign by hosting the Rob Upton Invitational. The Rams host the annual meet in honor of Robinson Upton -- a three-year member of Colorado Stateís track & field team who died tragically during the summer of 1992 in a rock-climbing accident. Action at the meet gets underway at 10:00 a.m. with the menís hammer throw. Running events are scheduled to begin at 11:45.
Through The Looking Glass: In 2004, Colorado State had two All-Americans in John Woods and Loree Smith. Woods, who is out of eligibility, finished 8th in the 200 meters, while Smith placed sixth in the hammer throw and also finished 24th in the discus at the NCAA Championships. The Rams also had junior Haley Hunt compete in the hammer (23rd), Keela Niemeyer in the discus (28th), sophomore Magnus Lohse in the shot put (10th), senior Mike Nicks in the steeplechase (21st), Austin Vigil in the 10,000 meters (16th) and senior Cristina Gourdin in the heptathlon (25th). At the NCAA Regionals, the menís team finished in 11th place at the regional meet with 25 points, while the women were eighth with 28 points. Nicks won the steeplechase, running a 9:02.32 and Smith won the hammer throw, setting the midwest regional record with her toss of 198-8. At the Mountain West Championship, both the menís and womenís teams placed second. Woods won both the 100 and 200 meters, winning both for the second time in his career, after doing so in 2002. The 4x100 meter menís relay team was also victorious. The quartet of sophomore Rodnee Pope, sophomore Denny Majerus, senior Brandon Kent and Woods won the second-ever relay title for the men, along with the 2002 squad. On the womenís side, Smith won both the discus and hammer.
Honored: Loree Smith was named the 2004 Mountain District Outdoor Female Athlete of the Year by the United States Track Coaches Association. Smith won the award after being ranked in the top five all season in both the hammer and discus events. Smith holds both the school and Mountain West Conference records in the hammer and the Mountain West record in the discus.
Throwers Take Title: According to The Throwerís Page, a website dedicated solely to the throwing events in track & field, the Colorado State team finished the 2004 season ranked number one. Using the descending Division I order lists, the Rams earned 31.6 points, 16.0 for men and 15.6 for women, to beat out second place Florida, which tallied 29.5 points. The Rams also finished first in the hammer throw, first in the discus throw and third in the shot put. They were first among menís teams and third among womenís teams for the combined first-place ranking.
All-Conference: A total of 20 Colorado State student-athletes were named to the 2004 Mountain West Outdoor Track & Field All-Conference team and 14 of those are returning this year. To be named to the all-conference team, a student-athlete must finish in the top three at the conference championship or be a member of the winning relay team. An asterisk (*) indicates a repeat outdoor all-conference selection.
Rheannon Backes, high jump
*Jacob Benson, long jump
Josh Glaab, 10,000
*Katie Hansen, discus
Justin Hazzard, 400 hurdles
Nate Heyrman, hammer
Amanda Huddleston, triple jump
Brandon Kent, 4x100 relay
Magnus Lohse, shot put
Denny Majerus, 4x100 relay
Drew Morano, 200, 400
*Mike Nicks, steeplechase
Rodnee Pope, 4x100 relay
*Loree Smith, shot put, discus, hammer
Schedule for Rob Upton: Following is the event schedule for the annual Rob Upton Invitational on Saturday:
10:00 a.m. Hammer Throw Men (Women to follow)
10:00 a.m. Shot Put Women (Men to follow)
Follow womenís hammer Discus Women (Men to follow)
Follow menís discus Javelin Women (Men to follow)
11:00 a.m. High Jump Women (Men to follow)
Noon Pole Vault Men (Women to follow)
Noon Long Jump Men (Women to follow)
Follow womenís long jump Triple Jump Men (Women to follow)
Running Events - Finals
11:45 a.m. 5000-Meter Run Women
12:15 p.m. 400-Meter Relay Men
12:20 p.m. 400-Meter Relay Women
12:25 p.m. 3000-Meter Steeplechase Men
12:40 p.m. 3000-Meter Steeplechase Women
12:55 p.m. 1500-Meter Run Men
1:05 p.m. 1500-Meter Run Women
1:15 p.m. 110-Meter Hurdles Men
1:30 p.m. 100-Meter Hurdles Women
1:45 p.m. 400-Meter Dash Men
1:55 p.m. 400-Meter Dash Women
2:05 p.m. 100-Meter Dash Men
2:15 p.m. 100-Meter Dash Women
2:25 p.m. 800-Meter Run Men
2:35 p.m. 800-Meter Run Women
2:45 p.m. 400-Meter Intermediate Hurdles Men
2:55 p.m. 400-Meter Intermediate Hurdles Women
3:10 p.m. 200-Meter Dash Men
3:25 p.m. 200-Meter Dash Women
3:40 p.m. 5000-Meter Run Men
4:00 p.m. 1600-Meter Relay Men
4:10 p.m. 1600-Meter Relay Women
Record Holders: There are six current school record holders competing for the Rams. Mike Nicks holds the schoolís steeplechase record, while Magnus Lohse owns the shot put record. On the womenís side, senior Katrice Thomas holds the record in the 400 meters, while sophomore Janay DeLoach holds the record in the long jump, junior Amanda Huddleston holds the triple jump record and Loree Smith owns the hammer record. Thomas and DeLoach, along with sophomore Megan Fox and Candace Lelo also hold the school record in the 400 meter relay.
A Glimpse of the Future: Next week, Colorado State will stay in-state as the Rams head to Northern Colorado in Greeley. On Thursday and Friday, several Rams will compete in the Mike Bennett decathlon/Kim Schimenz heptathlon while the rest of the team will compete on Saturday in the Tom Benich Classic.
Playing Hosts: Colorado State will host the Mountain West Conference Outdoor Track & Field Championships May 11-14. The Rams have not hosted a conference championship since 1997 when they hosted the WAC. All eight Mountain West womenís teams and all six menís teams will be in Fort Collins competing for the title.