Ole Miss Runners Prep For 2011 Cross Country Season

OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM Martin Kirui (photo by Nathan Latil)
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM
Martin Kirui (photo by Nathan Latil)
OLEMISSSPORTSDOTCOM

Aug. 26, 2011

OXFORD, Miss. - Following a 2010 season that saw Ole Miss Cross Country achieve some of the best results in school history, the Rebel men and women look to carry that momentum into a promising 2011 campaign.

Ole Miss' collection of long-distance runners reported to campus on Aug. 16 and has looked good according to track and field associate head coach Doug Blackwell, who oversees the cross country teams.

The teams continue to prepare for their season debut at the Memphis Twilight Classic on Sept. 3 in Memphis, Tenn.

"Everybody's looking pretty good," Blackwell said. "We only have a couple of people with some nagging things. We get back the core group of women from last year when we had one of our best years but were really young. We add some new people who should come in and put some pressure on the returnees, so we're in really good shape on the women's side. We take a big loss on the men's side with Barnabas Kirui, but we expect the other men to step up and give us a solid team this year."

Senior Logan Waites and junior Katie Breathitt will lead the women's team in 2011. Waites was the top finisher at every meet for the Rebels a year ago and earned the highest SEC finish by a female in school history when she took 16th place. Breathitt made an immediate impact in her first ever attempt at competitive running (she was previously a member of the Ole Miss soccer team for two years). She took 29th place at the SEC Championships.

Between the two, they hold the majority of the Ole Miss long-distance records in indoor and outdoor track, as well as cross country.

"Logan and Katie both have the chance to finish among the top 10 or 15 at SECs, which would be higher than anyone here before," Blackwell said.

The coaching staff expects major contributions from juniors Amy McCrory and Anne Threlkeld and sophomore Kayleigh Skinner. Several newcomers will also be in the mix to earn a spot among the top five.

"We're looking forward to our best year ever in women's cross country," Blackwell said.

The Rebel men lose three-time SEC Cross Country champion Barnabas Kirui, who became only the fourth runner in league history to earn that distinction last year. He helped Ole Miss place fifth in the conference a year ago, the team's highest since 1996.

The Rebels return a pair of talented Kenyans, however, in senior Martin Kirui (Barnabas' brother) and sophomore Kipchirchir Kiptoo. Martin Kirui was an All-SEC second team and All-South Regional honoree last year. The former SEC steeplechase champion placed 14th at the SEC Championships and 18th at the NCAA South Regional and was Ole Miss' second finisher at every meet. Kiptoo earned SEC All-Freshman accolades after his 25th-place showing at the SECs.

"If Martin steps up to plate, he could finish in the top one, two or three in the conference," Blackwell said. "Kipchirchir had a good freshman year, and we're expecting him to do even better this season."

Other returnees who have had good offseasons and will be counted on in 2011 include sophomore Loren Newsom and junior Riley Young. Several more will compete for a spot in the top five.

In a poll released by the league office this week, the SEC Coaches picked Ole Miss to finish eighth in men's and women's this year.

Ole Miss Gear
    Facebook
    Twitter
    Blog
    • VIDEO: Home is Ole Miss

      Friday, January 23, 2015 - Football

      Ole Miss Football: Home is Ole Miss from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • VIDEO: Ole Miss Baseball Omaha Challenge

      Friday, January 23, 2015 - Baseball

      The Season: Ole Miss Baseball: Omaha Challenge 2014 from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • Rivalry Game with NCAA Tournament Implications

      Thursday, January 22, 2015 - Women's Basketball

      Ole Miss closes out a three-game stretch in which they will have faced three consecutive ranked opponents when they welcome No. 18 Mississippi State on Thursday night. The Rebels are 1-1 through the first two games of the stretch, having... read more

    • Prewitt, Golson Impress at Senior Bowl Practices

      Thursday, January 22, 2015 - Football

       Photo GalleryCody Prewitt and Senquez Golson will represent Ole Miss in the Senior Bowl, which will take place Saturday at 3 p.m. CT from Mobile, Alabama, and will be televised by the NFL Network. The duo have already had a busy... read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Jan. 13-19, 2015)

      Monday, January 19, 2015 - Athletics

      Men's Basketball - Ole Miss thrashed No. 19 Arkansas 96-82 on Saturday. The Rebels picked up their first true road win over a ranked opponent since 2003 and scored the second-most points ever by an opponent in Bud Walton Arena.... read more

    • Observations from the Best Seat in the House -- Jan. 18

      Sunday, January 18, 2015 - Athletics

      The Ole Miss men's and women's basketball teams both made some history, while the men's and women's tennis teams started their spring seasons. National Signing Day (Feb. 4) and the start of baseball season (Feb. 13) are less than a... read more

    • Key Stretch Starts with Tough Test in LSU

      Tuesday, January 13, 2015 - Men's Basketball

      After an up-and-down non-conference slate that included wins over Creighton, Cincinnati and Oregon, all away from home, and losses to Charleston Southern and Western Kentucky, both at home, Ole Miss learned a lot about itself in the first week of... read more

    • Way-Too-Early Preseason Top 25 Rankings

      Tuesday, January 13, 2015 - Football

      Ole Miss football finished the 2014 football season with a 9-4 record and a top-20 final national rankings in both polls. The Rebels come in at No. 17 in the Associated Press poll and No. 19 in the Amway Coach... read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Jan. 6-12, 2015)

      Monday, January 12, 2015 - Athletics

      Women's Basketball - Ole Miss went 2-0 on the week with a road win at Florida and a win at home against Alabama, moving to 13-4 overall and 3-1 in SEC action while winning back-to-back SEC games for the first... read more

    • Observations from the Best Seat in the House -- Jan. 11

      Sunday, January 11, 2015 - Athletics

      The Ole Miss men's basketball team opened SEC play, while the Ole Miss women's basketball team continued SEC play, as we enter the heart of college basketball season. Over the weekend, the men's and women's teams posted wire-to-wire wins on... read more

    • Rebels to Open SEC Play ' in Grand Fashion'

      Tuesday, January 6, 2015 - Men's Basketball

      Ole Miss looks to reverse history, as the Rebels (9-4) travel to No. 1 Kentucky tonight (6 p.m., SEC Network), the Southeastern Conference opener for both teams. Ole Miss is 0-15 all-time against the nation's top ranked team, last playing... read more

    • Ole Miss Athletics Week in Review (Dec. 29, 2014-Jan. 5, 2015)

      Monday, January 5, 2015 - Athletics

      Ole Miss Athletics Week in ReviewDec. 29, 2014-Jan. 5, 2015Football- The No. 9 Ole Miss football team finished the 2014 football season with a 9-4 record, its best since 2009, after a 42-3 defeat to No. 6 TCU in the... read more

    • Observations from the Best Seat in the House -- Jan. 4

      Sunday, January 4, 2015 - Athletics

      Observations from the Best Seat in the House is back, having taken a week off for the Christmas holidays and traveled to Atlanta for the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl. The football team finished the season in a "New Year's Six" bowl,... read more

    • VIDEO: Ole Miss-TCU Motivational

      Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - Football

      Ole MIss vs TCU Official Team Motivational 2014 Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl from Ole Miss Rebels on Vimeo.... read more

    • Three and Out: Keys to Ole Miss-TCU

      Wednesday, December 31, 2014 - Football

      Three areas to watch as No. 9 Ole Miss plays No. 6 TCU in the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, the inaugural "New Year's Six" bowl game. Containing Boykin, Handling TCU's Tempo Ole Miss coaches and players have compared TCU junior quarterback... read more