By Joseph Hayes
It’s safe to say Morgan Beadlescomb is off to a good start this cross country season.
The 2016 Algonac High School graduate is a redshirt junior at Michigan State University. Over the weekend, he opened the season at the Spartan Invitational, where he finished first among the field, with a time of 24:24.9.
Port Huron Northern graduate Matthew Thomas placed fifth overall (25:08.3).
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“I got off to a good start,” Beadlescomb said. “We all started together and have been training consistently. That’s helped me. I stayed in East Lansing over the summer working with the guys. This is my fourth year. I’m a redshirt junior athletically, but I’m a senior in terms of credit.
“I’ve been able to work with a lot of great guys. I’ve had a lot of great teammates. The culture here is amazing. We have one of the best coaches. I haven’t been hurt in a long time and everything here is consistent. They have kept me motivated.”
The extra motivation appears to have paid off. Beadlescomb ran competitively his first two years at MSU before redshirting last year. Taking last year off seems to have aided in his training and helped him come in at his best to start this year.
“We at times will have some guys take a step back and redshirt,” Beadlescomb said. “We lost two of our best guys after my second year and gave Matt Thomas a chance to step up as a leader and he came on with a completely different mindset.
“Redshirting and taking a step back but still racing a couple of times unattached out of uniform was looked at as a way of training. I looked at what I could do differently and when I went into track season I felt a lot more patent. It was a huge learning experience for me.”
During the outdoor track and field season earlier this year, Beadlescomb set a new school record in the 5K (13:47), much to his own surprise.
He had expected to use the season as mere training in his overall preparation, but was able to take a big step forward.
“I was having a pretty average indoor season and my coach threw me in the 5k,” Beadlescomb said with a chuckle.
“I didn’t know how fast I was running. There were a number of pros in the race that run for high level teams and I went to the line and didn’t have expectations on who to beat or stay with. I didn’t look at my pace until two miles, and then I thought to myself that I was moving pretty quick and to stay with that.”
Beadlescomb ended up finishing sixth overall, with a new school record and plenty of confidence entering the cross country season.
“It was definitely a big confidence booster,” he said. “I went into training for cross country with a different expectation. My attitude carries over into everything I do. I have an attitude to be better and contribute to any team I’m on.
“I want to work with my team and help my team. That’s my mentality on how I can push myself and that translates on whatever I push myself in.”
That has helped prepared Beadlescomb for his career after running. He is majoring in electrical engineering and is already off to a solid career path after interning at Ford.
“I think being an athlete is helping prepare me for my career after athletics,” Beadlescomb said. “It’s the NCAA and every race is fierce. Even though I’m winning it’s always someone at the next level.
“When I came in, I had no idea how much I didn’t know about college athletics and even about running; something I have dedicated myself to for a long time. It’s so much I’ve learned. I’ve learned to be the best I can be outside of running as well.”
Joseph Hayes is the new Managing Editor at Blue Water Healthy Living. Hayes was previously at the Port Huron Times Herald and hosted a show on Power 88.3. He has additional experience at The Detroit News, Detroit Free Press and Jackson Citizen Patriot and WDFN 1130. Contact Hayes at firstname.lastname@example.org