Harvard lands one of the nation's best - Foot Locker All-American Billy Orman

Harvard lands a big fish


It's the academic reputation that draws most students to Harvard, but there is always a strong correlation between the discipline needed to be an elite level track athlete and the discipline needed to be a high academic achiever.  That’s what makes the Ivy League a premier destination for some of the nation’s top runners.  This year was no exception for Harvard.  The Crimson have a recruiting class that spans the country, and their stellar reputation has resulted in a commitment from one of the nation’s best; Billy Orman (Tuba City, AZ).


Many consider Orman to be the finest distance runner to ever come from the state of Arizona.  Here is a list of his accomplishments, courtesy of AZtrackXC.com:


In 2009 Orman became the first Tuba City Athlete to qualify for the Footlocker National Cross Country Championship Race

In 2010 Orman won the Footlocker West Championship race to become a two-time qualifier for the Footlocker National Cross Country Championships where he earned All-American status with a 6th place finish.

In 2010 Orman set the Arizona State Cross Country Championship 5k Course Record of 15:03.32 at Cave Creek Golf Course.

On January 20, 2011, Orman was selected as the Gatorade Cross Country Athlete of the Year for Arizona. "The award recognizes outstanding athletic excellence, high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the race course."

On the track, Orman boasts PR’s of 9:04.97 (3200m), 4:19.60 (1600m), and 1:57.55 (800m); all done in 2009 when Orman was a junior.


But Orman is not the only high profile recruit heading to Harvard in the fall.  As of February, the following athletes have also committed:


Alaina Alvarez (Dana Hills, CA) – 2009 Foot Locker Nationals finalist.  PR’s of 10:41.63 (3200m), 4:57.56 (1600m), and 17:39 (5000m).


Wil Geiken (Los Gatos, CA) – 4th in the California State Meet (Division II) with a 5000m PR of 15:16. Geiken also ran 9:17.90 for 3200m on the track as a junior.


Jenny Guidera (Doylestown, PA) – Recently ran an indoor PR of 10:02.91 in the 3000m at the 2011 Hispanic Games, and 4:44.16 for 1500m at the Poreda Invitational.


Lucy McCullough (San Rafael, CA) – Won the California Sate Division 5 Championships in a PR time of 18:13 for 5000m.


Connor Reck (Santa Ynez, CA) – 1:55.15 800m PR as a junior.


Dean Sullivan (Morristown, NJ) – 187’3” PR in the javelin and was 10th in the 2010 New Balance Outdoor Nationals as a junior.


Erica Veidis (Sparta, NJ) – 55.11 PR for 400m and 2:08.53 for 800m.


Although the recruiting wars are not over, Harvard seems to be finding a way to entice high profile student-athletes, despite the lack of athletic scholarships and a smaller candidate pool than most Division I schools.  In fact, the entire Ivy League is finding ways to leverage their academic reputations and creative financial aid programs in an effort to draw the nation's best student-athletes. 7 of Massachusetts' elite athletes are headed to Ivy League schools; including Andrea Keklak (Lincoln-Sudbury) who committed to Princeton and Ariel Bearegard-Brenton (Deerfield Academy) who committed to Penn.  The list is growing every day and we will continue to post updated information as it becomes available.


Click here to view the full list, or email your college choice to pbendzick@milesplit.us.  Please include your full name, high school, college destination, and events.