At first, more concerned about academics, Caitlin wasn’t sure if she wanted to run in college; then she said, “When I came for a running visit I really fell in love.”
Jenny, on the other hand, was focused on track from the beginning.
“I visited on the suggestion of a couple of guys who were on the team,” she said. “I just loved my visit and the team, and could see myself here.”
With a coaching change the summer before they were supposed to arrive on campus with Bill Taylor taking over both cross country and track and field, Caitlin and Jenny were notified a week before the season started of who their new coach would be. Because of this change, they had little guidance that summer about how to train.
“Caitlin was in Nashville and knew some of the older runners, and was able to help me out,” Jenny said.
Since they have been here since the beginning of coach Taylor’s tenure they have been able to see the program evolve into what it is today. Both Caitlin and Jenny said they knew from the start he was the real deal.
“He talked about winning national championships,” Caitlin said.
Jenny added, “He was the one who planted these ideas and goals in our heads.”
Jenny and Caitlin met at Advance, and continued to talk throughout the summer. While they weren’t roommates freshman year they seemed to click right away and became close friends.
“We were always in the halls talking, and were friends pretty much right away,” Caitlin said.
“We listed out all of the things we had in common one time,” Jenny said. “We couldn’t get away from each other so we had to be friends.”
Both Caitlin and Jenny agree that their friendship has had a positive influence on their performance on the track team, especially now that they’re roommates.
“It’s good to be able to turn to her and talk things out, and discuss different things about track,” Caitlin said.
After being teammates for four years it was hard for them to come up with one favorite memory. They mentioned staying at a haunted hotel in Alabama, and a once in a lifetime trip to Oregon.
They agreed, however, that the best memories come from bus trips.
Caitlin said, “You’re with all your friends, and it’s just fun times and bonding.”
As for this season, Jenny and Caitlin have high hopes for both the men’s and women’s track teams. One thing they agreed on being a sure thing: broken records.
“I think we broke 42 records last year, Jenny said. “Some of those were broken multiple times over the season.” Caitlin added, “I’ll be surprised if any school records that were older stand at the end of the season.”
Written by Sydney Poe, student assistant in athletics media relations.