NEW ORLEANS – The University of Arkansas men’s cross country team enter the year ranked 17th in the USTFCCCA Preseason Coaches’ Poll. The rank is an eleven spot leap from last year’s 28th place finish at the 2014 NCAA Cross Country Championships.
One of only two SEC teams to be voted onto the preseason poll, Arkansas has been the dominant force out of the Southeastern conference since they joined in 1991. The Razorbacks own seven of the conference’s eight national titles and is the only SEC team to have produced an individual national champion in two-time first-place finisher Godfrey Siamusiye (1995, 1996).
Since his tenure at Arkansas, head coach Chris Bucknam has produced an All-American in five out of seven seasons and has led the Razorbacks to two top 10 finishes at the national meet.
Although they lose two-time All-American Stanley Kebenei the Razorbacks return five NCAA All-Region honorees to their roster with Austen Dalquist, Alex George, Gabe Gonzalez, Aidan Swain and Cale Wallace. In addition to their returners, two-time NJCAA cross country All-American Frankline Tonui joins the Razorbacks this season following a successful spring which saw the transfer earn second team All-SEC honors (10,000m) and qualify for the first round of the 2015 NCAA Championships in the 3,000-meter steeplechase.
Newcomers Graham Brown, Cameron Griffith, Kyle Hosting and Stephen Mugeche will also enhance the Razorback roster this season and look to make appearances in the top five.
Arkansas opened their season at the Cowboy Preview on Sept. 1 with Brown coming through first for the team and ninth overall. The Razorbacks will compete next at the Iona Meet of Champions in New York, N.Y. on Sept. 19.
For more information on Arkansas track and field including in-meet updates, follow @RazorbackTF on Twitter