SAVANNAH, Ga. - The Armstrong State University men's cross country team is currently preparing for the 2015 Peach Belt Conference Championships, which is October 24th in Gainesville, Ga. In addition to preparing physically, the Pirates had a golden opportunity to prepare mentally as Todd Wiliams, the current U.S. recordholder in the 15k, spoke to the Pirates on Saturday on campus.
Williams was a two-time US Olympian who started his athletic career in Monroe, Mich., participating in several youth sports before falling in love with track and cross country. He was a six-time state champion in Michigan in track and cross country, earning HS All-American honors as a junior and senior. At the University of Tennessee, he was a four-time SEC Champion and eight-time NCAA All-American, leading the Vols to the national title in his senior season. He still holds the 3k, 5k and 10k school records at UT and in his Olympic and professional career, won 21 US titles.
"It was inspiring to listen to Todd's stories about his career," Armstrong State head men's cross country coach Michael Sergi said. "He overcame obstacles and adversity, becoming an NCAA All-American as well as a professional distance runner and an Olympian. His message was about how he pushed through many failures and challenges on his way to becoming America's best 10k runner of the 1990s."
Williams finished 10th at the Barcelona Olympics in 1992, running at the 10k distance, and also ran the 10k for the US at the Atlanta Olympics in 1996.