Nos. 95, 96 & 97, Revisited [Runners]

Photo by James Rogers
Photo by James Rogers

Right: “I want to do a road mile. I want to break 16 in the 5K. I have wanted to break 17 in the 5K for a long time for cross-country, and I did it in my 6K on Sunday. I was so happy when I saw the time. Because that was my high school PR [17:00.2]. And we don’t run 5K very often [in college]. For so long I was like, ‘I can’t break my high school time.’ But I finally did it.”

“Talk about Coach McGuire. What has he taught you that you’ll take with you beyond Michigan?”

Right: “Tough love, don’t feel sorry for yourself, and just work hard. … There’s a level of accountability on the team, and so whenever there’s a period of no leadership and no seniors making sure everyone’s running enough miles, then the team’s way worse for a few years. … He really lets us create our own culture. He knows that even if he tried to create our culture, he couldn’t. You know what I mean? He’s one person, there’s 30 of us.”

Center: “He’s not really that involved in every single aspect of our training. He doesn’t tell us how many miles to run—it’s up to us. We adjust it to how we feel and how our bodies are reacting to it. … [Coach McGuire] is old enough and wise enough to know that this is the best way it works.”

No. 97 [Runners]

Photo by James Rogers
Photo by James Rogers

“My darkest times have been both of my freshman years. In high school, my freshman year, it was my first season running cross-country, and I played soccer at a pretty high level, so I did both at the same time. I was on a state runner-up soccer team, as well as being an all-state cross-country runner. It was a tough balance, and it was my first year of high school. I remember one day in the middle of the season just going out for a normal run with my senior captains and all my best friends, and I just remember breaking down, crying, stopping, and I just curled up in a little ball. I look back to them picking me up and pushing me through it all, teaching me that everything is gonna be all right. I correlate that with my freshman year here, because I had similar leadership in our captains. I had some pretty awful races my freshman year. It was just as similar, even though there wasn’t soccer involved. College is hard, classes are hard, training at this level is really hard. So those two freshman years were hard.”