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Syracuse XC: Knight is Shining, but Hehir Hasn't Disappeared

While a lot of national attention has deservedly focused on Justyn Knight, Martin Hehir should not be overlooked, and here's why.

Martin Hehir and Justyn Knight Continue to Lead Syracuse XC
Martin Hehir and Justyn Knight Continue to Lead Syracuse XC

As the Syracuse Orange prepare for the Wisconsin Adidas Invitational next week, a lot of the national focus has been on Sophomore Justyn Knight. This is certainly warranted because Knight has flashed the kind of potential that wins titles, and the personality that makes him someone the media will seek out.

It's clear to see that Knight has had a pretty remarkable 2015 so far. He won the ACC 1500m Title (w/one shoe), finished 6th in the NCAA Outdoor 5k, broke 4 minutes in the mile, and finished 25th at the World Junior XC Championships. After starting this XC season with a win at the Coast to Coast Battle, it's understandable that he's ranked in the Top 10 by both FloTrack and LetsRun.Com and was featured on the USTFCCCA QA2 podcast....

"Yo, I'm really happy for Justyn Knight and I'mma let you finish talking about him, but Martin Hehir's had one of the best distance running careers of all time at Syracuse.... One of the best careers of all time!"

Ummm, well Kanye, I don't think anyone knew you felt so strongly about collegiate distance running. I don't disagree with you at all, and since you are going to let me finish, I was just going to talk about Martin Hehir's Syracuse career.

So it it's cool with you,  I'll just go on to finish some of my thoughts about Martin, the guy, who I said last year could leave Syracuse as the best distance runner in school history. In his first three cross-country seasons, he has both a Big East and ACC Individual XC Title. Of the returning NCAA runners, Martin had the fastest 10k time from last year's outdoor season and with the NCAA XC meet run at that distance, he should be someone considered as a top contender.

Loyal readers of NunesMagician don't need me to remind them that Hehir is Syracuse's school record holder in the Mile, 3K and 10K. They also know that while those national media outlets might be overlooking his potential, his Syracuse teammates sure understand what he brings to the program. The national outlets might not see him as a top runner right now, but don't be surprised if you see Hehir and Knight both crack the Top 15 in Louisville.

All kidding aside, I think that the continued development of Justyn Knight, as well as Colin Bennie, so far this Fall, is a positive for the Syracuse program. The fact that they were ahead of Hehir in Boston shows that this year's Syracuse team is probably stronger at the top, but it doesn't mean that a complete changing of the guard has occurred. It's the first race in the season for the full Syracuse squad, and we have a long way to go to get to the NCAA Championships.

The Orange will compete again on Friday October 16th at the loaded Wisconsin Adidas Invitational. We'll have a preview of this meet, which will have major NCAA At-Large implications. Anything predictions for this weekend's meet Kanye?