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  #1  
Old 07-30-17, 10:35 AM
OVTC OVTC is offline
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Withrow/Cross country

Is it possible for Cincinnati public high schools to get back into cross country?

A likely candidate is Withrow High School. Withrow high school has a very good background in track and field and their girl's team has won 3 state titles. Their next move could be into cross country. So, I welcome comments...
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  #2  
Old 07-30-17, 11:16 AM
Rohbino Rohbino is offline
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I wasn't aware that there wasn't a XC team. Does Withrow have a coach or a potential coach? Keep in mind that the state titles that you speak of were not won on the strength of distance/mid-distance events.

In order for the school to get a team going there would need to be a culture developed and a good coach that is an ambassador and promoter of the sport. Interest needs to get started early and well before the fall. Someone should also be promoting the Dan Wahle meets that are held at Withrow HS in the summer. The RCGC Urban Cross Country Series, now in its 50th season that are currently being held at Lower Millcrest Park in Norwood until sometime in August, should also being promoted. Those events are fun for the kids and are FREE to enter. The person promoting those events should try to make it fun for the kids.

The problem that you speak of is common with inner city schools. The causes are multi-factorial but with some effort can be addressed and overcome. Everything will require patience because it will take some time to build the culture that a successful XC program requires. You have posted multiple threads on the subject. I feel that Mathking addressed things pretty succinctly in this post.

The school that really puzzles me, in why it doesn't show more prowess in XC as well as T&F, is Walnut Hills. It is one of the best schools in all of Ohio. I include well regarded private schools in that statement. The demographics are certainly there.

Last edited by Rohbino; 07-30-17 at 11:29 AM..
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  #3  
Old 07-30-17, 03:11 PM
lane4 lane4 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rohbino View Post
The school that really puzzles me, in why it doesn't show more prowess in XC as well as T&F, is Walnut Hills. It is one of the best schools in all of Ohio. I include well regarded private schools in that statement. The demographics are certainly there.

Just because a kid is smart doesnt mean they are automatically state-caliber distance talent. Walnut has had reasonable success over the last decade, winning league and District titles in cross, and a few notable individuals. But they have to compete with schools like Summit, St X, Ursuline, and St Ursula(as well as Clark Montessori in CPS) for the kids with both academic and athletic chops.
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Old 07-30-17, 08:53 PM
OVTC OVTC is offline
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By your comment " state titles ... were not won on the strength of distance/mid-distance events" are you assuming that Withrow does not have distance talent?

As example in 1950 a Cincinnati inner city public school was state champion in both XC and T&F. Also a female runner from Princeton won the 100 meter hurdles and the next year won the state cross country championship.

As you can see sprinter can also be a distance runners and vice versa.

Would love to hear your comments.


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Old 07-31-17, 04:48 AM
psycho_dad psycho_dad is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OVTC View Post
By your comment " state titles ... were not won on the strength of distance/mid-distance events" are you assuming that Withrow does not have distance talent?

As example in 1950 a Cincinnati inner city public school was state champion in both XC and T&F. Also a female runner from Princeton won the 100 meter hurdles and the next year won the state cross country championship.

As you can see sprinter can also be a distance runners and vice versa.
Track and Field and Cross Country are two completely different sports. The distance events on the track are the only things similar to Cross Country and the only events most of us look to as indicators of what a school might have as far as Cross Country talent. We certainly do not look at what a school might have as returning hurdlers to see what they might do in cross country, even though one in every ten thousand state level hurdlers are state level cross runners. We also don't look at data from nearly 70 years ago.

Withrow did not enter a single runner in any event on the track over 400 meters at the District meet this past season. Not even a last place finisher. Not their 5th best 400 meter runner in the 800. Not anyone in anything that any of us involved in distance running or Cross Country might look at as distance talent. We all know that there is a ton of talent walking the halls in every school. Especially in inner city schools. Withrow does not seem to attract any of their distance talent or even their non talented distance runners to run track. Can't get 4 of them to run a 4x800 relay. Can't even get one of them to run anything over 400 meters. So, what gives you any indication that they can get 5 to run cross country? How is Withrow a good candidate to have a cross country program?

Would love to hear your comments.
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  #6  
Old 07-31-17, 11:00 AM
Jowsepi Jowsepi is offline
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If any school would be able to grow to XC it would be Hughes. Their AD is the most passionate person I've ever worked with.
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Old 07-31-17, 11:28 AM
Taco MacArthur Taco MacArthur is offline
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Is West High's XC team still just the basketball team doing conditioning?
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  #8  
Old 07-31-17, 12:03 PM
lane4 lane4 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by psycho_dad View Post
Can't get 4 of them to run a 4x800 relay. Can't even get one of them to run anything over 400 meters.

Simply not true. Withrow's girls ran a more than respectable 10:09 4x800 at the ECC meet, finishing 3rd to Kings and Turpin(both state qualifiers), and beating such notable "distance schools" as Anderson and Loveland.

They didnt have anyone entered at District above 400m because the goal was to line the team up for the most possible/likely points at State.

Last edited by lane4; 07-31-17 at 12:28 PM.. Reason: grammar fix
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Old 07-31-17, 03:35 PM
psycho_dad psycho_dad is offline
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That changes everything. How do they not have Cross Country when they can clearly cover the girls 4x800 every once in a while? My bad!
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  #10  
Old 07-31-17, 05:00 PM
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Mr. Slippery Mr. Slippery is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OVTC View Post
By your comment " state titles ... were not won on the strength of distance/mid-distance events" are you assuming that Withrow does not have distance talent?

As example in 1950 a Cincinnati inner city public school was state champion in both XC and T&F. Also a female runner from Princeton won the 100 meter hurdles and the next year won the state cross country championship.

As you can see sprinter can also be a distance runners and vice versa.

Would love to hear your comments.


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Man, you sure showed us. By that logic, all 6th round NFL draft picks should eventually become Hall of Famers just because Tom Brady was drafted in the 6th round.

I'm sure the demographics in inner-city Cincinnati are the exact same now as they were in 1950.

In 1950, there were only about 200 schools in Class A for basketball, but there were 800 in Class B. That gives you an idea of how many schools in Ohio were big and how many were small. Inner-city schools dominated HS sports until about 1975 when forced busing was starting to take effect. There were very few large suburban schools to compete with them.

Last edited by Mr. Slippery; 07-31-17 at 05:15 PM..
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  #11  
Old 07-31-17, 05:33 PM
mathking mathking is online now
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One of the biggest problems with getting an XC program going when there hasn't been one is that it can be a tough sell. "Hey come run a bunch of miles. It will be fun." It doesn't happen overnight. You can start and maintain a program in inner city schools. At South HS in Columbus the boys basketball coach resurrected the XC program a few years ago and got a bunch of guys to go out. Then they started getting girls to come out. They also got a new track coach who was encouraging. They got kids into distance races. But it is a struggle and takes consistent coaching.

When kids might have an hour and a half or more using COTA after practice to get home, it can be hard to convince them to try a new sport like XC. (I coached XC and track at Walnut Hills in 1998-2001, and even there we had kids who didn't run because the trip home would have been too long.) My son is going to be a freshman runner at a Columbus City HS this year and we are still working out how to minimize his trip home when he needs to use COTA.
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Old 07-31-17, 08:23 PM
CoventryTrackXCguy CoventryTrackXCguy is online now
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Im convinced at this point that most, if not, all schools have potentially state calibre teams walking their halls every day. The problem is getting those people onto the cross country course. And then coaching these kids to their potential. What sets the great teams apart, like Woodridge, is not some chemical in their localities water. Its that they are somehow getting 30-40 kids out every year, with some decent talent in that mix. And coaches that can coach the kids well. Thats probably 90 percent of the difference. So as to the question as to whether Cincinnatti public can put a competitive team out. My answer is, theoretically, yes. But in practice, the answer is far more complicated than a simple yes or no.

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  #13  
Old 08-01-17, 12:20 AM
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Lancermania Lancermania is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jowsepi View Post
If any school would be able to grow to XC it would be Hughes. Their AD is the most passionate person I've ever worked with.
The irony here is OVTC ran for Hughes and went to UC after graduation and ran distance for the Bearcats. After UC, he ran in road races and formed a running club. The great Reggie McAfee ran for his club. He is frustrated by the lack of distance running in Cincinnati's urban high schools.
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Old 08-01-17, 12:35 AM
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Lancermania Lancermania is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lane4 View Post
Just because a kid is smart doesnt mean they are automatically state-caliber distance talent. Walnut has had reasonable success over the last decade, winning league and District titles in cross, and a few notable individuals. But they have to compete with schools like Summit, St X, Ursuline, and St Ursula(as well as Clark Montessori in CPS) for the kids with both academic and athletic chops.
Bob Roncker built up the cross country program at Elder which btw is a Cincinnati inner city Catholic high school by targeting kids who were honor roll students. He believed cross country runners needed mental fortitude and mental discipline to succeed. By the 1980s, Elder was a state power in big school cross country winning four state titles and two state runner-ups from 1982-1989.

Last edited by Lancermania; 08-01-17 at 01:07 AM..
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  #15  
Old 08-01-17, 12:58 AM
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Originally Posted by psycho_dad View Post
That changes everything. How do they not have Cross Country when they can clearly cover the girls 4x800 every once in a while? My bad!
As far as I can tell, Withrow's girls only ran the 4 X 800 at their league meet. Their goal there was to win the team title which they were successful in doing. They also had a girl get 4th in 800 in 2:23.49. Both the 4 X 800 relay and the 800 runner would have scored at the district but neither one would have qualified to the regional. The Withrow coaches probably realized that and didn't run those girls in those events because of it. Their goal at this meet was to advance as many girls as possible to the regional.

Most of the eight schools in Eastern Cincinnati Conference (ECC) are suburban schools with the exception of Withrow and Walnut Hills. Here are the current schools in that conference: Anderson, Kings, Loveland, Milford, Turpin, Walnut Hills, West Clermont, Withrow
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Old 08-17-17, 11:29 PM
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It appears that Withrow will have both boys and girls cross country this year.
They are listed for the West Chester District races at
http://swdab.org/Cross%20Country/cross_country.htm
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