PROVO, Utah — No. 3 BYU men’s cross country will vie for its first Big 12 title as it competes in its inaugural Big 12 Championship meet on Saturday at the Iowa State Cross Country Course in Ames, Iowa.
· Host: Iowa State
· Location: Iowa State Cross Country Course| Ames, Iowa
· Distance: 8k
· Time: Men’s Championship – 10:00 a.m. CDT
"I think it's a great opprotunity we got going into this," said BYU men's cross country coach Ed Eyestone. "With three teams competing ranked in the top six nationally, it's going to make for a very exciting conference championship. We are up to the challenge. The guys are fit and confident coming into this."
The Cougars arrive in Iowa coming off a recent second-place finish at the Nuttycombe Wisonsin Invitational. The team combined for 162 points and a podium spot, placing only second to the defending NCAA National Champions No. 1 Northern Arizona. All-American Creed Thompson finished first for BYU, finishing the muddy 8k course in 23:35.3 and placing 10th overall. Co-Captain Joey Nokes ran the course in 23:42.7 to land in 13th place.
The 2023 Big 12 Cross Country Championship marks first Big 12 postseason competition of any BYU team.
The top contender the Cougars face is No. 2 Oklahoma State. The Cowboys most recently swept team and individual titles at the Cowboy Invitational on Sept. 23 and have held the No. 2 spot in the USTFCCCA National Coaches Poll all season. Freshman Denis Kipngetich took the victory, finishing the 8k course in 23:21.5, the sixth fastest in course history.
No. 6 Texas will also give BYU competition, having placed fifth at the Nuttycombe Wisonsin Invitational. Senior Devin Hart led the Longhorns finishing in 17th place with a time of 23:45.0.
Following the Big 12 Cross Country Championship, the Cougars will prepare for the NCAA Mountain Regional held in Lubbock, Texas on Nov. 10.