Somewhere between the final barrier and the finish line of Saturday’s Pepsi Team Invitational 3000m steeplechase race, Washington’s Meron Simon (left/photo by Paul Merca) must have heard the voice of John Blutarsky extolling his fellow Delta Tau Chi members in the defining moment of the 1978 film, “Animal House”, filmed up the street from Historic Hayward Field in Eugene.
In that speech, Blutarsky, played by John Belushi, says to the Deltas, who are on the verge of being booted out of Faber College, “Over? Did you say ‘over’? Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!”
As fate would have it, Oregon’s Tanguy Pepiot began celebrating his apparent victory with about 50 meters to go, waving to the crowd, oblivious to the fact that Simon was charging hard, catching Pepiot with less than five meters to go, and getting the win in 8:57.86 to 8:57.96.
The video of Simon’s victory has gone viral, with close to one million views on YouTube since FOX Sports posted it earlier in the day. Portions of it have been posted on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and whatever social media outlets are available.
In case you missed it, here it is:
Simon’s teammate, shot putter Frank Catelli has even gotten into the spirit, splicing together clips along with his now famous stretch run:
As long as there’s social media, the Huskies’ Meron Simon won’t be a forgotten man. Not now, nor anytime soon.
The moral of the story: The race ain’t over until you cross the line.