Viable candidates for "greatest US HS distance runners" should ONLY include Ryun, Webb, Verzbicas, and Ritz.
Are you that ignorant?
Gerry Lindgren easily displaces every boy on your list except Ryun. Lindgren won the Olympic Trials in high school, and ran 13:44 5k on a dirt track! Also 4:01 mile on dirt track.....8:40 2-mile on tiny 11-laps-to-a-mile indoor track....beat 2 Olympic Champions in XC race in high school....beat the Russians at 10k dual.....and on and on.........
Piss-Poor competition era. This wasn't an era in which high schoolers were so spectacular that they could beat international competition. This was an era in which there was quite literally no money in professional running, and senior-level competition was so pathetic that exceptionally talented high schoolers could beat them.
Also, what is wrong with you people and thinking literally everything was on a dirt track? Lindgren did not run a 13:44 on dirt. This is very similar to how people seem to think every single run by Ryun was on a dirt track, regardless of whether or not that was the case. Lindgren also did not have a cross-country race against two Olympic Champions in high school, unless nearly every source regarding his early distance-running prowess somehow missed it.
Bluntly speaking, Lindgren fails to make the list explicitly because Ryun 100% beats him out in his only claim (historical prowess). Every single record Lindgren had was broken, and as far as cross country was concerned, he objectively cannot compare to Ritzenhein. His mile is not the best. His two-mile is not the best. His 5000m is not the best. His cross-country credentials is not the best. You do not get to be the "greatest", when someone has a better claim than you on every point you can make.
I am Gerry's friend on facebook. Want me to ask him about his 13:44?
Lindgren's 13:44 was run on the same night & same meet as Ryun's first ever sub-4. Lots of photos out there for anyone to see for themselves.