Monday, May 30, 2016

WSU legend Henry Rono named to Pac-12 men's track & field All-Century team...

SAN FRANCISCO—Nine athletes with Washington ties were named by the Pac-12 Conference to its All-Century Team that was announced Monday evening.

The 53-member squad was led by Washington State’s Henry Rono (left/photo courtesy WSU Athletics), who was named by the 35-member panel of coaches, former athletes, administrators & media (disclosure: Paul Merca of paulmerca.blogspot.com was among the panel voting on the team).

Rono established four world, collegiate, Pac-10 and WSU records in 81 days in 1978. He ran 5000m in 13:08.4 (April 8), 3000m steeplechase in 8:05.4 (May 13), 10,000m in 27:22.47 (June 11) and 3000m in 7:32.1 (June 27). His steeplechase and 5000m times are still the best in collegiate records through 2015 season. 

He won four Pac-10 titles - steeplechase in 1977, 5k and 10k in 1978 and 5k in 1979. Rono won six NCAA titles, including the
1978 and 1979 steeplechase. In 1978, he was named Track and Field News' World Track & Field Athlete of the Year, Sport Magazine Track Athlete-of-the-Year, AP European Sportswriters Sportsman of the Year and was the North America winner of Helms Athletic Foundation World Trophy. A member of Kenya’s 1980 Olympic team, he dropped his 5000m time to 13:06.2 (1981).

Also named from Washington State were:  Bernard Lagat (1500), Gerry Lindgren (10000), Jeshua Anderson (400 hurdles), Julius Korir (steeplechase), Joseph Taiwo (triple jump) and John Van Reenen (discus).

Washington’s two representatives to the All-Century team were hammer thrower Scott Neilson (left/photo courtesy UW Athletics), who won four NCAA titles in that event from 1976-79, and pole vaulter Brad Walker, who won an NCAA title, and still holds the American record in that event.

Walker was just recently voted into the Husky Hall of Fame, and will be inducted this fall.

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