Fleet vs. Lalang vs. Callahan?
The other night I had a dream that Peter Callahan
of New Mexico ran 3:27.27 and won the NCAA 1500m. I'm not even kidding. Now I'm not saying that that won't happen, but it's not. What will happen in the 1500 meter final this weekend will be fascinating and I think it may be the most exciting race on the track all weekend.
The heavy hitters go like this: Mac Fleet of Oregon, Lawi Lalang of Arizona, Rich Peters of Boston U., Peter Callahan of New Mexico and I'll throw Jordy Williamsz of Villanova (sorry for leaving you out of my East Regional predictions) in there because of his nasty 3:36 PR.
Of these there are three types of runners. You have the go out and lead it from the gun types (Lawi and Mac (sometimes)) and you have the sit and kick and blow everyone's brains with your finish (Williamsz and Callahan and maybe Brannon Kidder of Penn State and Rorey Hunter of Indiana for that matter).
The best part about this race is that anything can happen. I mean who would have predicted that Zach Perkins of Air Force would have been runner up to Mac Fleet last year at this race and then not even make the meet this year?
I feel like Lawi Lalang is due for a big race as he struggled at NCAA Indoors, but has looked solid this indoor (out kicking Ed Cheserek for the Pac-12 1500m crown). Mac Fleet has a lot riding on this one as well as it is his final race in the Oregon uniform in front of the home crowd on the home track.
Gordon Mack has been preaching Peter Callahan all year long and he may be right. Especially after the dream I had, who knows what he is capable of (obviously I'm kidding about the dream). His kick is so very lethal though and if you don't remember, ask anyone who anchored the mile in the NCAA DMR Indoors last year and they can tell ya all about it.
In the end, I really feel like it will be an epic battle between Lalang and Fleet for the 1500m crown and just to make a prediction, Lawi Lalang is hungry for redemption from Indoors and will take home the "w."
For reference here are the entries with their best 1500m mark (no mile conversions).
Heat 1 Prelims
1 Brannon Kidder SO Penn State 3:45.72 (3:38.82)
2 Adam Jones SO Samford 3:45.80 (3:44.89)
3 Sam Prakel FR Oregon 3:42.30 (3:42.30)
4 Nick Harris FR Washington 3:45.71 3:42.84)
5 Sam Penzenstadler JR Loyola (Ill.) 3:45.88 (3:43.25)
6 Rich Peters JR Boston U. 3:45.39 (3:37.67)
7 Ben Saarel FR Colorado 3:45.58 (3:41.54)
8 John Gregorek SR Columbia 3:45.27 (3:42.72)
9 Michael Atchoo SR Stanford 3:45.11 (3:39.57)
10 Jeremy Greenwald JR Georgia Tech 3:45.79 (3:44.57)
11 Mac Fleet SR Oregon 3:44.67 (3:38.35)
12 Alfredo Santana SR La Salle 3:45.65 (3:43.21)
Heat 2 Prelims
1 Thomas Joyce SO California 3:41.28 (3:41.28)
2 Izaic Yorks SO Washington 3:42.29 (3:42.29)
3 Joel Hubbard SO Syracuse 3:46.01 (3:43.12)
4 Grant Pollock SR Virginia Tech 3:45.91 (3:40.77)
5 Matt Hillenbrand SR Kentucky 3:46.04 (3:41.48)
6 Jordan Williamsz SO Villanova 3:45.90 (3:36.74)
7 Lawi Lalang SR Arizona 3:40.35 (3:33.20)
8 Jake Hurysz JR Colorado 3:41.75 (3:40.63)
9 Rorey Hunter JR Indiana 3:45.85 (3:44.59)
10 Peter Callahan JR New Mexico 3:40.40 (3:40.40)
11 Grzegorz Kalinowski SR E. Michigan 3:45.89 (3:41.80)
12 John Simons SR Minnesota 3:40.56 (3:40.56)