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September 26, 2008

Footnotes: Oregon men and women have strangehold on preseason NCAA cross countryrankings

The Oregon men and women were almost both unanimous picks as the No. 1 teams in the nation in the preseason cross country national rankings released recently.

The Oregon men will go for consecutive NCAA championships in Terre Haute on Nov. 24, while the women’s team will look to improve on its second-place finish last year.

The Ducks’ men’s team, coached by Vin Lannana got all 12 first-place votes, but the women’s team received 10 out of 12.

In the men’s poll, Oregon was followed by Oklahoma State, Colorado, Iona and Alabama in the top 5. All of those teams have stated plans to compete in the massive Pre-Nationals races Oct. 18 in Terre Haute.

From the Great Lakes region, Wisconsin was sixth and Michigan eighth. Indiana University was voted just outside the top 30 at 33rd.

Indiana State, picked third in the Missouri Valley Conferenc, was left out of the Great Lakes regional rankings.

On the women’s side, Florida State was picked No. 2 in the nation, followed by Washington, three-time defending national champion Stanford and Arizona State.

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• The Indiana State men’s and women’s cross country teams are off until Oct. 3, when they face off against many top teams around the nation in the Notre Dame Invitational.

• Hamilton runs strong — Running for the University of Indianapolis, freshman Amy Hamilton had a strong performance in her first Indiana Intercollegiates on Sept. 19.

The Terre Haute North graduate took 23rd place out of 159 runners, running the course at the Indiana University Golf Course in a time of 19 minutes, 17 seconds.

She was just 15 seconds behind former North teammate Kayla Alexander, who was Indiana State’s No. 2 finisher.

• Former college standouts team up — The Ragnar Relay Series includes several long relay races.

By long, we’re talking 205 miles of constant running.

Several Terre Haute residents formed the Michelob Ultra team and ran a course-record time in the Great River event, which spans from Lacrosse, Wis., to Minneapolis.

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