Division 3 Pride

Congratulations to Greg Crowther and Nikki Kimball on being named the 2007 ultrarunners of the year by USATF. Both Greg and Nikki attended Williams College, a NCAA Division 3 school. Having run for the Honor Goats of Haverford College, a rival D-3 school, I think it’s pretty sweet that two D-3 runners have performed at the highest level on the ultra scene. However, I can’t help but see this as a challenge. Goats, are you going to let Ephs roll on you like this? Let’s get our acts together and pound. Anyway, here are Greg and Nikki’s bio’s from the USATF press release:

Greg Crowther, 34, Seattle, WA, is the ultrarunner of the year. Crowther was the USA National 50km Champion setting a course record of 3:04:35. He was the USA 100km Road Champion running 7:14:31, placed second at Miwok 100km trail, finished in eleventh place to score for the bronze-medal winning USA 100km Team at the IAU World Cup in The Netherlands running 6:52:52, first place and course record at Bridle Trails 50km, and first place at SunMart 50 Miler in 5:37:36. Crowther is on the faculty at the University of Washington, where he is acting lecturer in the Department of Chemical Engineering. He graduated from Williams College in Vermont in 1995 with a degree in biology and earned a Ph.D. in Physiology & Biophysics from the University of Washington.

Nikki Kimball, 36, Bozeman, MT, is a repeat winner of the ultrarunner of the year award. Kimball finished first in course record time at the Spokane River 50km Race, finished second at Miwok 100km, first at Western States 100 Miler setting a course record, and finished first in course record time at the Ultra Tour Du Mont Blanc. She was also winner of Mount Masochist. Kimball, like Crowther, is a graduate of Williams College. She is a physical therapist in Livingston, Montana.

In shorter trail running news, congratulations to the Honor Goats on their recent second place finish at the D-3 cross country national championship meet. This was Haverford’s highest ever team placing at D-3 nationals. Go Goats!

2007 Men’s D-3 XC National’s results – photo by Tim Golden

There are 4 comments

  1. crowther

    Thanks, Brian — and thanks again for introducing yourself at JFK.I believe that many other top ultrarunners also come from small-college backgrounds. Anton Krupicka (Colorado College) and Kyle Skaggs (Evergreen State College) come to mind, but there probably are numerous others. Perhaps small-school runners are less likely to be totally burned out by graduation, and thus more likely to keep running and eventually give ultras a shot?

  2. Trail Goat

    Greg, I'm not surprised to learn that some of the other elite ultrarunners are small school grads. While far from elite, running at a D-3 school certainly kept me from burning out in the long run, but that's because Haverford's small size meant that I was converted to a sprinter for three years following me sophomore XC season.I think school running is attractive to those who love running. At Haverford, the Goats trained and raced their butts off, but did so for the love of running and the team. Coach Tom Donnelly fostered not only those aspects but also encouraged students to excel both as students and people. Running was to be a part of life in balance with other aspects. Anyway, thanks for stopping by and best of luck in repeating your tremendous success next year. -BryonPS. I know that you ran for the Ephs, but did Nikki run intercollegiately?

  3. crowther

    Bryon: Nikki was basically a cross-country skier (and a darn good one!) in college. I believe she did one season of cross-country running and no track. After graduating, she dabbled in elite snowshoe racing, biathlons, maybe mountain biking…. Her athletic resume is completely absurd.

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