Freshmen Set for NCAA Championships Matthew McClintock and Johnnie Guy are the first freshmen duo in the nation to qualify for the championships in over 40 years.
Matthew McClintock has been Purdue's top runner all season. He will put everything on the line on Saturday at NCAAs.
Nov. 16, 2012
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -
The Purdue men’s cross country team has two individuals competing in the NCAA Championships on Saturday. Freshmen Matthew McClintock and Johnnie Guy will represent the Boilermakers in Louisville, Ky., for the 10,000-meter race.
“We’re excited about going down to Louisville this weekend,” assistant coach Dave Hartman said. “Matt and Johnnie ran phenomenally well at the regional championships. I think at NCAAs they are going to gain some valuable experience as they grow and develop as NCAA collegiate athletes.”
McClintock and Guy qualified after running career races at the Great Lakes Regional in Madison, Wis., a week ago. McClintock finished seventh overall while Guy finished 12th. The top four individual finishers who are not on a team that qualifies earn bids to the championships. McClintock was second among such finishers while Guy finished fifth. Though he was fifth, Guy picked up one of two at-large bids nationwide because of his overall finish.
The Boilermakers’ freshmen duo ran its first career 10k at the regional. Despite having no experience in the longer distance, McClintock finished the race in 30:57 while Guy crossed the finish line in 21:20. McClintock’s time ties him for 10th place all-time on the Purdue list for fastest 10k at an NCAA Regional Championship and is the first Boilermaker to crack the list since 1986. McClintock and Guy are the first pair of freshmen from any school to qualify individually for the NCAA Championships in over 40 years. The duo also gives Purdue its first multiple representation at the NCAA Championships since the men’s team qualified in 1986.
Purdue is one of just seven schools on the men's side to have two individuals by themselves this year, yet are the only one to do so with a pair of freshmen. Guy and McClintock are the first Boilermaker men to qualify for the NCAA Championships since Caden Shields did so in 2009.
“This is their first experience in NCAA Championship competition,” Hartman said. “Even though they have nothing to lose going into this meet, I still think that they can pull off a couple NCAA All-American certificates to bring back to West Lafayette.”
The Big Ten proved to be one of the toughest conferences in the nation again in 2012. On the men's side, four teams earned bids to the NCAA Championships while three others had individuals qualify, including two from Purdue and a pair from Illinois. The Great Lakes Region also proved one of the best in the country. Five teams qualified for NCAAs on the men's side. The Boilermakers finished just one point out of sixth place.
Wisconsin leads the group of Big Ten teams to the championships after it won its 11th straight Great Lakes Regional title last weekend. The fourth ranked Badgers are also defending National Champions. Wisconsin and No. 13 Michigan automatically qualified while No. 24 Indiana and No. 30 Michigan State picked up at-large bids. Illinois’ Hunter Mickow and Jannis Topfer, Ohio State’s Donny Roys, and Penn State’s Sam Masters join Guy and McClintock to compete in the championships individually.
The University of Louisville will host the NCAA Championships on Saturday, Nov. 17. The race will be held at the E.P. Tom Sawyer State Park. The women's race is scheduled to begin at noon ET. The men's 10k will follow at 1:15. A live webcast of the race will be aired on NCAA.com.