April 1, 2016
At a press conference at Nike headquarters today, April 1, it was revealed that Nike’s two most pre-eminent distance coaches aren’t content to rest on the great success they enjoyed at World Indoors as both made major announcements.
Nike’s Bowerman Track Club (BTC) announced that they are expanding internationally and have hired Dutch 800m star Bram Som as Technical Director and Head of Athlete Recruitment.
“Bram is the top pacer in the world right now and he understands the skills that are critical for our club’s success,” said Bowerman Track Club head coach Jerry Schumacher.
When asked at the Nike press conference if Som’s hiring was related to his club’s pacing attempt to put two men on the World Indoor 3000m team, which went terribly wrong on the last lap at USATF Nationals, Schumacher got a bit defensive.
“This is why I never talk to the media,” said Schumacher, noting this was a big day for the BTC as they had never signed a European athlete or European coach before. Schumacher also tried to say that Som’s hiring was not a result of the 3000m at USA Indoors, but because club assistant coach Pascal Dobert is going to have to scale back his coaching duties because of the success of his bar in Portland, Wine and Growler.
“The microbrew thing is crazy in Portland to begin with. Pascal has taken it to another level because he is smart. He has wine too and that attracts a slightly more upscale crowd,” said Schumacher. He noted people get tired of sitting next to people in flannel who smell.
While Schumacher said he did not like talking to the media, he was very polite and did answer all questions from the media. However, a person he did not talk to or even look at was Nike Oregon Project coach Alberto Salazar, who sat next to him for the entire one-hour press conference that was dedicated to the latest news in the Nike track clubs.
Salazar was on hand to publicly announce that he will be carrying out more doping experiments on his sons.
“I used a prohibited substance on my sons, admitted to it, and USADA (U.S. Anti-Doping Agency) did nothing. So it clearly it is legal if I first get a prescription for the drug myself,” he said, alluding to the fact he gave his sons Androgel (testosterone) because he said he was concerned about masseuses like Chris Whetstine sabotaging his runners. “Plus WADA’s got much more important things to worry about than some winning-obsessed guy like me with only $30 billion behind him as there’s a winning-obsessed guy in Russia (Putin) with way more behind him. I only recently realized that Russia’s annual revenue dwarfs us (Nike) by about 200 billion a year.”
Salazar said he was torn between trying HGH or EPO.
“Don’t think for a second someone can’t be sabotaged with EPO. All it takes is a quick needle prick,” he said.
Schumacher also announced the signing of former Brooks Beasts runner Matt Scherer. Scherer has been retired since 2014 but was one of the top pacers on the circuit that year. Jesse Williams, head of athlete recruitment of Brooks, was furious when asked to comment on the Scherer signing, “Screw Nike. They never let up. I felt we finally turned the tables on them when we signed Nick and he won USAs last year, but this one hurts.”