After his first-place finish last weekend in Minnesota, Jerrell Mock earned the title of U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches’ Association (USTFCCCA) NCAA Division I Men’s National Athlete of the Week.
The Rams competed at the Roy Griak Invitational in Minnesota, where Mock finished first of 131 runners, earning him the individual championship title. This marked the second consecutive year Mock won individual honors at the Roy Griak Invitational. Mock became only the third player in the history of the event to win the individual title in consecutive seasons.
Behind Mock’s performance, Colorado State became the only program in meet history to have a runner win the individual men’s championship in three consecutive seasons. The streak was started by Jefferson Abbey in 2015.
Ranked No. 18 by the USTFCCCA, CSU earned its first ever team title at the event, finishing with 47 points. The effort placed them ahead of No. 25 Michigan State (55 points) and No. 20 UCLA (63 points).
Mock’s 8k time of 24:52 was a 15-second improvement from his first-place finish in 2016. Mock bested UCLA’s Garret Reynolds’ second-place time by 11 seconds, earning him first place and Athlete of the Week.
“Those guys stepping up is huge for our team,” head coach Art Siemers said on Mock and the rest of the Rams in a release. “We have even more guys that can step up, but in these kinds of conditions, everybody takes the heat and humidity a little differently. But this is what a good team does. Guys step up when they need to and help the team. Our guys never gave up hope. It was a tough course – when you put the heat and the hills together…it’s not easy.”
The Rams’ next meet is scheduled for Oct. 13 at the Nuttycombe Wisconsin Invitational in Madison, Wisc.
Collegian sports reporter Mamadou Balde can be reached by email at email@example.com or on Twitter @mamadoubalde62.