Best Quotes From 2017 NCAA DI Cross Country Championships Press Conference

LOUISVILLE, Kentucky – Today, the pre-meet press conference was held in advance of the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships.

Here are some of the best quotes from the gathering.

BYU’s Rory Linkletter on if this could be a banner year for his team: “We’ve been thinking ever since Terre Haute last year about winning a national championship [this year]. It’s clear that there has been an NAU (Northern Arizona) versus BYU hype and we’re excited for that. We also know that we haven’t had the opportunity to race Stanford or Syracuse. We’ve seen a lot of things, but one thing we know about cross country is anything can happen. We’re prepared to go to war and bring our best.”

NAU coach Michael Smith on the battle between Oregon and Michigan in Terre Haute: “Last year, the race on the women’s side, is just a fantastic example of the beauties of this sport. Every runner counts.”

Missouri’s Karrisa Schweizer on the difference between running as an underdog and as a defending champion: “I think anyone would agree that being a defending champion is a little tougher than flying under the radar, but I’ve done it before in indoor track and outdoor track and just kind of knowing how to deal with the pressure. Everyone has a shot, but I know I’m going to give it my all tomorrow.”

Alabama’s Vincent Kiprop on which of his teammates are fastest, including himself: “That’s a really good question. I bet a good answer comes tomorrow. It’s been good training with them. They’ve pushed me.”

Stanford’s Grant Fisher on the continued talk about the rivalry between him and Justyn Knight: “There are a lot more people in this race than me and Justyn, so I think it would be a mistake just to focus on the Grant-Justyn deal. He’s a phenomenal runner, great guy and I respect him a lot, but there are a lot of guys in the race.”

Colorado’s Dani Jones on her team’s third-place finish last year after going into the meet as the favorites: “Although it was really disappointing, we grew a lot from it. You saw a lot of that during indoor and outdoor. But tomorrow is just another day … It’s another day of racing. It’s something you worked hard for.”

San Francisco coach Helen Lehman-Winters on the condition of the course: “There are certainly some softs spots and some standing water in certain areas. They seem to be at not necessarily critical areas where we’re too concerned about slipping, but there is some standing water and maybe it will dry up a little bit. If not, we have three steeplechasers on our team, so we’re ready for it.”