GBN XC wrote:
Because of what? A 3:55 mile time that's slower than Webb's? A lack of accomplishment at any other distance race in high school? Beating out international competition in an period where there was absolutely no monetary incentive in the sport, and even the most talented athletes rarely continued past college? Geez, I may not have been around when Ryun ran, but some of the people on these boards act like the competition in the 1960s was somehow equivalent to the competition now. If Ryun is the best HS distance runner based on being able to beat the shallow talent pool in 1964, then you may as well admit that Alistair Brownlee is as dominant and talented an endurance athlete as Bekele.
Off the top of my head, the international talent back then was still at least the equivalent of a NCAA championship meet today. Lucas was a mid pack college runner as a freshman and couldn’t make it out of one season of XC. So don’t discount what Ryun went against. Lucas quickly fell short once competition got tougher than high school boys.
LV had an incredible senior year of track (3:59, 8:29 & many of the performances mentioned above) and then continued competing through the summer to become a junior triathlon world champion. This has been discussed on the boards before and the consensus was that he probably shouldn't have been competing at all that fall and Oregon could have handled him a lot more responsibly as a developing talent. Having recently tasted success in the tri, falling short of his previous dominant performances in his first races and being immature led to his departure. Had he stuck around & been trained appropriately there is no way you can say he wouldn't have been near or at the front of the NCAA pack simply based on his HS times. Nevertheless, post-HS times have no impact on whether he was the best HS runner. Also, to the other poster +1 for the Brownlee reference. Haha.