DI Men's XC Championships Could Soon Move To 8k

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A major change could be coming to NCAA DI men’s cross country in 2020 as the Division I Track and Field and Cross Country Sport Committee is recommending a proposal to switch the championship distance from 10,000m to 8,000m.

The committee met early last month ahead of the 2019 NCAA Indoor Championships, where various changes to the sport were proposed. It was at this meeting where lowering the DI men’s championship distance to 8,000m for regionals and nationals was recommended, as the committee is seeking to streamline the distances of regular season and postseason competition.

As it is now, almost all regular season races— including conference championships— are contested at 8,000m before moving up to 10,000m for regionals and nationals. With this potential move, the committee seeks to eliminate the discrepancy between regular and postseason races.  

If approved, the effective date for the switch would be August 1, 2020. It is not yet clear when or if the change will be made official, but from here the proposal goes to the Competition Oversight Committee to make a final determination.

However, a collection of Division I cross country coaches are mounting a resistance to the change. Oklahoma State’s Dave Smith and more than 20 other coaches sent a letter to the Sport Committee urging a reconsideration on the proposal. The coaches felt blindsided— many were unaware that such a change was on the table until recently—and are unhappy that this significant shift was proposed without their input. 

Many of these coaches also do not agree with the rationale behind the change since the current format has been in place for so long. With their efforts, the coaches included in the letter are hoping that the NCAA Sport Committee will consider pulling this proposal from their list of recommendations to the Competition Oversight Committee. At the very least, they are seeking a delay on any decision so that more voices can be heard.

The NCAA DI men's cross country championship race has been contested at 10,000m since 1976, and has not been shorter than six miles since 1965. If the change is ultimately pushed through, a 2k off the championship race will likely help mid-distance heavy teams bridge the gap between them and traditional distance powers.

The potential change is for Division I men’s cross country only, as the men's Division II championship distance is expected to stay at 10,000m. The Division III race is already at 8,000m.

Salwa Eid Naser Avoids Whereabouts Ban Due To Apartment Snafu

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The whereabouts case brought by the Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) against 400m world champion Salwa Eid Naser of Bahrain has been dropped by the World Athletics Disciplinary Tribunal after a filing failure was backdated and a missed test reversed, allowing the sprinter to avoid three whereabouts failures within a 12-month period.

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Jepchirchir & Kiplimo Take World Half Titles In Fast Races

Jacob Kiplimo

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All Eyes On Cheptegei At Saturday's World Half Marathon Championships

Joshua Cheptegei

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Three Big Questions Ahead Of The OSU Invitational

Ryan Raff

In a year in which the NCAA indoor, outdoor and cross country championships have been canceled due to COVID-19, it’s safe to say that a mid-October invitational cross country meet has never been more anticipated than Saturday’s OSU Invitational in Stillwater, Oklahoma. 

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Which Of The 2020 World Records Is Best?

Joshua Cheptegei, Mondo Duplantis

For a year in which both the world indoor championships and the Olympic Games were postponed, 2020 has seen its fair share of world records. (Of course, one could argue that those events being postponed aided in world record achievement, particularly in the cases of Joshua Cheptegei and Letesenbet Gidey.) A season with so much history has begged a question: which among these world records is the best? 

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Michigan Pro Ekiden And Half Marathon Born Out Of Necessity

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Joshua Cheptegei Topples Bekele Again With 26:11 10,000m WR

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For the second time in less than two months, 24-year-old Ugandan Joshua Cheptegei has taken a world record from Kenenisa Bekele. After breaking Bekele’s 5,000m record on August 14 in Monaco in 12:35.37, Cheptegei on Wednesday ran 26:11.00 in Valencia, Spain, to dismantle the 26:17.53 Bekele ran in 2005.

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Letesenbet Gidey Crushes Women's 5,000m WR In 14:06.62

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22-year-old Letesenbet Gidey smashed fellow Ethiopian Tirunesh Dibaba’s 5,000m world record on Wednesday night in Valencia, Spain, by running 14:06.62. Gidey, running in the NN Valencia World Record Day, took down Dibaba’s 14:11.15 mark which had stood since 2008.

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How to Watch: 2020 NN Valencia World Record Day

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The 2020 NN Valencia World Record Day starts on Oct 7, 2020 LIVE on FloTrack

Kitata Prevails As Kipchoge Falters, Kosgei Dominates In London

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