NASHVILLE - Brent Leber is about to go where no former Bison has ever gone: the NCAA Cross Country National Championship.
With Leber’s historic race coming up on Saturday, we have gathered all the information you need to follow along.
When/Where: The National Championships will take place on Saturday, November 23 in Terre Haute, Indiana at the LaVern Gibson National Championship Cross Country Course aka XC Town USA, hosted by Indiana State. The men’s 10,000m will begin at 11:15 a.m., CT.
Watch: The race will be streamed on FloTrack.org.
Competition: Opponents from all over the country will be racing on Saturday, including 31 teams and 38 individual qualifiers. Leber was one of the South Region’s four at-large selections to the race. No other racer from the ASUN, on the men’s or women’s side, made the cut. The only other runners from the state of Tennessee were Middle Tennessee’s automatic qualifying team and fellow South Region at-large selections Ben Vargehese of ETSU and Kaleb McLeod of Belmont.
The Road to Nationals: Leber won the ASUN’s individual crown, the second in program history, thanks to a blazing time of 24:17.54 in the 8k race in Fort Myers, Florida. He helped the men’s program to their fifth title. At the NCAA South Regional, Leber placed seventh overall with a 30:26.4 mark in the 10k, the highest finish for a Bison ever, in leading Lipscomb to a sixth-place finish as a team, which also tied the program’s best placement.
Selection Saturday: Of the top six runners in the South Region, five came from Alabama and Middle Tennessee. With Middle Tennessee's automatic qualification and Alabama’s at-large selection, Leber became one of the South’s four at-large selections.
Trophy Cabinet: In addition to winning the ASUN Runner of the Year award, Leber was named the ASUN Men’s Scholar-Athlete of the Year thanks to a GPA of 3.96 as an Exercise Science major. He accomplished the rare feat of winning both awards, joining former teammate Jacob Poyner. In addition to those honors, Leber is a three-time ASUN Runner of the Week (two of which came in 2019), a 2016 All-Freshman selection, and a 2016 Second-Team All-Conference member for the 10,000m in outdoor track.
The Leber File: It has been a long journey for Leber to make it where he has today. The Maryland native has gone through a number of injuries and physical setbacks during his time in the Purple and Gold, but he has managed to persevere. Read the full backstory on Leber’s journey here.