TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – The Indiana State men’s and women’s cross country programs will not compete in the Missouri Valley Conference Cross Country Championships, Program Director Angela Martin announced Monday morning.
“Going through the ups and downs of the COVID-19 pandemic has been stressful on our student-athletes,” Martin said. “The distance runners took the brunt of it, losing their outdoor season in 2020 and their cross country season in the fall. The coaching staff has had many discussions with the student-athletes and has made the joint decision to opt-out of the MVC Cross Country Championships.”
“From the onset of the discussion about conducting two championships in the spring semester, we were not in favor of it as an institution,” Senior Associate Athletic Director Angie Lansing said. “This is a difficult ask for distance student-athletes when it comes to their training and competition mindset. When the coaches solicited feedback from our team, it became clear we should opt-out of the cross country championships.”
The cross country conference championships, scheduled for this Wednesday, Mar. 3, in Evansville, Ind., comes just three days after the conclusion of the MVC Indoor Track & Field Championships.
“We do not make this decision lightly as our goal is to field a championship team in all three sports. Our distance runners trained hard over the summer to have a great fall, but there have been many setbacks. The physical and mental health of our student-athletes is important to us and trying to race two championships within three-to-five days of each other while traveling across three states twice is not ideal. We value the opinions of our distance runners and will continue to prepare for a successful outdoor season,” Martin said.
With the conclusion of the indoor season, Sycamore track and field will have a three-week hiatus before opening the outdoor season at the Ole Miss Classic in Oxford, Miss., on Mar. 27.