Jan. 19, 2012
East Lansing, Mich. - MSUSpartans.com caught up with Director of Track & Field Walt Drenth along with three standouts from last Saturday's GVSU Bob Eubanks Open.
Director of Track & Field
On his team's performance at the GVSU Open:
"I was really pleased. I think at this point we're not looking at specific marks as much as how competitive we were in every event. I felt like we were right in the mix whether it was with the throws, or the jumps, or whatever we were doing on the track. I felt like we were very competitive and it's in meets like these where you want to start knowing your group and gauging how they'll do in competition."
On Freshmen Tori Franklin's performance and being honored as the Big Ten Field Athlete of the Week:
"We knew she was a talent when we recruited her. Her high school marks were pretty special and she had done some things that had obviously warranted her being recruited by a lot of people. She came to campus and was off the charts. She came here with a great attitude, worked really hard, and she's an immense talent. She's just scratching the surface as far as we're concerned. Coach Chris Bostwick is an exceptional jumps coach and has done an amazing job with her. Tori has just started. It's a learning curve and we'll expect she'll get better and better."
On this weekend's Notre Dame Invitational:
"It's a scored competition and when we go to a meet that is scored we want to win. We are going to put our athletes in a position to give the team a chance to win. When we go to a scored meet, whether it's a conference meet or the NCAA's, it can't be about them. It's got to be about the team. If they behave and compete - and they make team points a priority - we'll have a successful weekend. If it's all about the individual and a particular mark - and if they act like it's all about them - then we won't be competitive. I would expect us to be competitive and give ourselves a chance to be right in the mix with the top groups at the end."
(Freshman, Westmont, Ill./Downers Grove South) - Big Ten Field Athlete of the Week for her performance in the triple jump.
On being named Big Ten Field Athlete of the Week in her collegiate debut:
"I actually found out on accident. I was looking at my picture on the roster and I saw it on the bottom right under "latest news". I called my mother right away and she told the whole family. It was amazing."
On her preparation and performance in the triple jump:
"In terms of preparation I spent a lot of time with coach Chris Bostwick and coach Lena Bettis. They really helped me a lot to get me where I am and helped me get a lot better. I had a lot to work on when I first came here. When it came to the actual jump, it just all came together the way I hoped it would."
On whether or not she's capable of going well above 13 meters for the triple jump:
"Yes...I feel like I can get there. It will take a lot of repetition in practice. I have to make sure I'm going through all the phases to do everything right."
(RS Sophomore, Montoursville, Pa./Montoursville Area) - GVSU Bob Eubanks Open record in the 300-meter dash (34.44).
On breaking the GVSU Open record in the 300-meter dash:
"It was kind of a rough day. My legs were tight and I wasn't feeling the greatest. As I warmed up for my finals in the 60-meter hurdles I kind of tweaked something in my hamstring. At that point, I was just trying to go out there and win and just put up a good time to get warmed up for the 300-meter dash. I then raced the 300 it was really nice getting that meet record."
On the benefits of redshirting last season:
"It really helped with time management - just knowing what to do with my time. I just worked hard on and off the track with academics and athletics. The experience allowed me to get myself situated and prepared for this important year."
On his strength in all events under 400 meters and what event he prefers:
"My coach (Randy Gillon) would say that my best event is the 400-meter hurdles but I like the 110-meter hurdles a lot more. It's a more technical and faster rhythm that I like. I like to sprint and the 110-meter hurdles is all about how quick you can be."
On his goals for this year:
"The goal this year is to help the team out with points at the Big 10 meet and be a champion there. Looking further, I want to finish in the top 3 at the outdoor NCAA's and try to get to the Olympic Trial finals for the 400-meter hurdles."
(Freshman, Lambton Shores, Ont./St. Clair Secondary) - 1st in the 600-meter run with a time of 1:32.77.
On winning her very first collegiate event:
"It felt good - but going into the event I was very nervous. However, I had enough confidence in myself going in based on the (seeded) times."
On her transition from high school to college running:
"This is my first indoor season, as I've never done indoor (track) before and I feel like it's a big change. I've never ran a 600-meter event. I've done the 400-meter and 400-meter hurdles but the 600 is pretty new to me."
On moving to shorter or longer events later in her career:
"In the past, I've ran the 200-meters and I've ran the 800-meters but I can structure my training to run both. If I had a choice, I'd probably like to compete in longer events because it's more in my comfort level."