Five years ago I stood in front of Gutterson Field house
nervous freshman. I didn't know what to expect from a college
field program. The first few months I practiced and lifted hard
get myself ready for the upcoming season. However, the attitude
of a few
members of the team started to bring me down, thus my work ethic
diminished. I can remember like it was yesterday when Kus left
on my voice mail saying he would like to "speak with me." I knew
coming. I took the long walk down the hallway to his office.
As I walked
into his office I glanced at the sign with the bull on it and I couldn't
even look Kus in the eye. He talked to me like a father to a
son and told
me if I didn't get my butt in gear he was going to cut me.
>From that point on I worked as hard as I could because I wanted to
contribute to the team and prove myself to him. I ignored the
that were there to party and slack off and just did what I had to do
better. The next year was totally different. We had new
and Brett). That year was the defining year for what UVM track
for me the last four years. There was a feeling that a true team
coming together. The relationships of the team weren't split
throwers, jumpers, and runners. We all started to get to know
and from there the team morale grew even greater. Everyone started
on the attitude that they were here to compete and work hard to make
that when the UVM Men's Track team stepped off that bus our competitors
respected us as people and athletes.
To me the last four years I have been in this program I have grown
individual and as a team member. The team has worked so hard
to get to a
point where everybody has the same agenda throughout the track season
that's to give it everything we got so there is never any regrets.
why when the decision was made to cut the men's program it was like
ripped the heart out of me. My life has been track and field
years now. When people ask me during the summer and fall if it's
season I tell them there is no off season in track and field.
never time to stop. My greatest fear was when I would miss a
practice or a
lift due to classes and knowing that my competitors could be working
that time and gaining an advantage on me. And I know that is
of my teammates as well.
For what the University of Vermont put into the men's program they
hell of a lot more out of it. This is one the most dedicated
teams here at the University. And we're not just athlete's we
athlete's. Ranking in the top three academically every year since
been here. We never got the recognition we deserved from the
We have had an Olympic Gold Medallist, America East Champions, New
Champs, and top finishers in the ECAC/IC4A meets. As far as total
points the men's team didn't win, but every individual that placed
meets did so because of the team support. I would trade in every
one of my
records or championships to see our team win a championship.
have accomplished what I have without the team.
To me the worst part about men's track being cut is the fact that another
freshman isn't going to get the chance to experience what I have
experienced in Men's Track and Field. And that's what makes me
friendships I have made throughout the years are the most important
to me because they are friends for life. Forget about all the
and championships. Without your friends you will never be able
those great moments with anyone.
Another great injustice is that after 34 years Kus wasn't even given
chance to defend us. Kus is one of the best head track coaches
country and is supported by two of the best and most hardworking assistant
coaches anyone could ask for. The fact that the coaching staff
as hard if not harder than us to create the team we have today is also
To me Track and Field here at UVM hasn't been about my performances,
been about friendships, teamwork and dedication. And that's something
will never forget. If I had it to do all over again I wouldn't
thing. Everybody always asks me why I came here where we had
track with pavement and dirt and an outdoor track that might as well
pavement and outdoor training sessions in snow and ice. And I
tell them it
was the coach and my girlfriend and the rest of that stuff didn't matter
because it only makes you stronger in heart and mind.
That is why this last year of my college track career isn't for the
University of Vermont. It's for the coaching staff, my teammates
present, for my loved ones and for my friends. And we won't go