2013 MPSF Indoor Track & Field Championships: Men’s Mid-D & Distance Preview

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*LRC Additional NCAA Conference Previews Here
*MB: LetsRun.com’s 2013 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Conference Championship Previews Are Now Live – Discuss them here

by Isaac Wood for LetsRun.com
February 20, 2013

Elijah Greer is the favorite because of his 1:45.0 PR and his conference leading 1:48.42 SB in 2013. Freshman David Graham of BYU is undefeated as a collegian, but has only run 1:50.11. He has proven to be a savvy racer and will be in the mix (after Greer). James Eichberger (1:47.64 PR, 1:52.74 SB) of Arizona is due for a fast race. After placing 6th at MPSF in 2012, Eichberger finished 15th overall for 800m at outdoor nationals. Boru Guyota  is the top returner from 2012 and is ranked #5 in the conference with a SB of 1:50.54. Freshman Nick Hartle of UCLA has run 1:51.30, but is definitely capable of better (broke 1:50 in high school), and should be under the 1:50 mark. Luke Lefebure of Stanford  (1:49.92 PR) has run some outstanding relays for Stanford and is ready to go under 1:50 this season as well.

Predicted Place and Time
1.    Elijah Greer- Oregon- 1:48.01
2.    Boru Guyota- Oregon- 1:48.42
3.    James Eichberger- Arizona- 1:48.56
4.    David Graham- BYU- 1:48.99
5.    Luke Lefebure- Stanford- 1:49.28

Matt Maldanado of Long Beach State is the returning champion in the mile (3:59.08 for the win in 2012, SB of 4:01.62 #7 in MPSF). Lawi Lalang of Arizona has the fastest time in the conference with the 3:54.56 that he ran at Millrose last week (3rd fastest time in NCAA Indoor history, #2 NCAA). Oregon’s mile crew has really improved this season with several new sub-4 milers. Brett Johnson (Virginia transfer) who ran an incredible 1200m leg in the DMR at the Armory invite a few weeks ago has run 3:58.62 (#13 NCAA) and teammate Chad Noelle has run 3:59.57 (#22 NCAA). Nick Happe of Arizona State (NCAA Indoor Mile finalist in 2012) has run 4:00.67 in 2013 (3:58.73 PR). Tyler Stutzman (4:01.23 mile PR) and Michael Atchoo of Stanford (3:59.92 mile PR) went 3-4 last season at MPSF and have the #9 and #10 best times in the conference so far this season. Matt Miner of Oregon has the #5 time in the MPSF having run 4:01.38.

Predicted Place and Time
1.    Lawi Lalang (if he runs)- Arizona-3:59.08
2.    Matt Maldanado- Long Beach St.- 3:59.42
3.    Nick Happe- Arizona State- 3:59.89
4.    Michael Atchoo- Stanford 3:59.93
5.    Brett Johnson- Oregon- 4:00.10

LRC Comment: We just don’t see Lalang running this.

Lawi Lalang is the returning champion in the 3000m for MPSF and has the #1 time in the country having run 7:42.79. Trevor Dunbar was 2nd last season, but he has been M.I.A. all season so will not be included in the preview. Nick Happe of Arizona State has the #2 time in the conference and has run 7:52.18 (#10 NCAA). Aric Van Halen of Colorado has the #3 time in the conference and #14 time in NCAA with a SB/PR of 7:53.74. Collin Jarvis of California was 4th last season and has the #6 time in MPSF and has run 8:03.62 this season (7:53.43 3000m PR). Michael Atchoo of Stanford has the #4 time in the conference with a SB/PR of 8:00.73. In all reality there is a huge gap in terms of ability after the sub 7:55 guys and the guys who have run around 8:00.

Many of these athletes could be competing in so many other events that they might not even run the 3000m, but either way here are my predictions.  Some sleepers that are not in this preview are: The Rosas of Stanford, Hugh Dowdy and Blake Theroux of Colorado, Joey Bywater of Washington, maybe Jeremy Elkaim of Oregon (13:39 5k PR)

Predicted Place and Time
1.    Lawi Lalang- (If he runs)- Arizona- 7:51.20
2.    Aric Van Halen- Colroado-7:55.67
3.    Collin Jarvis- California- 7:56.12
4.    Nick Happe- Arizona State- 7:58.91
5.    Michael Atchoo- Stanford- 8:00.10

This race will be very interesting because it all depends on what the coaches and runners decide to focus on for the championships. I do think that since Lawi Lalang has not run a 5000m yet this season that he will run one here. If that is the case, his 13:08.28 PR is proof to the fact that he is untouchable in this event, if he gives a full effort. I can see Jeremy Elkaim and Dustin Fay dueling it out for 2nd and 3rd like they have been dueling a lot of 5000m races this season (they have run a lot of 5k’s for one season though which leads me to think they might not run another 5k). UCLA red-shirt frosh Lane Werley, who ran 8:53 in HS, has a chance to improve upon his good 13:57.10 5000m PR he ran at the Husky Classic. I think he is good enough to be sub 13:50 (he beat Fay every meet throughout XC and Fay has run 13:51.96). The Rosa twins of Stanford will be a factor in this race and Pierce Murphy or Martin Medina could also be a factor.

Predicted Place and Time
1.    Lawi Lalang- Arizona-13:42.10
2.    Lane Werley- UCLA-13:48.76
3.    Joe Rosa- Stanford-13:52.11
4.    Jim Rosa- Stanford- 13:55.69
5.    Erik Olson- Stanford-13:57.81

LRC Comment: #16 on the NCAA list is 13:48.47 and Fay is #19 at 13:51 so he needs to run faster so we think he will run. Put him in second.

The DMRs at MPSF should be good as the word on the street once again is that the majority of these teams need to improve upon their DMR times from earlier this season (Although the DMR at the Armory with the Oregon and Stanford battle was outstanding). Stanford has some very good people to pull from to run a faster DMR (Atchoo, Stutzman, Lefebure), and Oregon has a slew of sub-4 milers now (Brett Johnson, Chad Noelle, Mac Fleet, and Mike Berry at the 400). BYU is loading up and should be running Ryan Waite (1:46 800m PR), Cade LIndahl (46.2 400m PR) and Jared Ward (4:03 Mile PR). Washington has some quality guys as well with Satterwhite at the 400m, Bywater in the mile.

1.    Oregon
2.    BYU
3.    Stanford
4.    Washington
5.    Colorado

LRC Comment: 12th on the NCAA list was 9:31.91. Only one team nationally has beaten that this year but that will change soon.

More: *LRC Additional NCAA Conference Previews Here
*MB: LetsRun.com’s 2013 NCAA Indoor Track & Field Conference Championship Previews Are Now Live – Discuss them here

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