Dec. 3, 2001
TEMPE, Ariz. - Arizona State freshman J.J. Duke was named the Pac-10 Men's Cross Country Newcomer of the Year, conference commissioner Tom Hansen announced today.
Duke, a native of Clovis, Calif., was the top freshman finisher at the Pac-10 Championships, placing 15th and helping ASU to a runner-up team finish, the best-ever Pac-10 showing for the Sun Devil men.
Also an all-region honoree, Duke was ASU's third runner to cross the finish line at the NCAA Championships (130th) and the West Regional Championships (21st). Duke was the team's second-highest finisher in his first collegiate cross country meet, placing sixth at the UC Irvine Invitational Sept. 8.
Stanford freshman Sara Bei was named the Women's Cross Country Newcomer of the Year, while Pac-10 Cross Country Athlete of the Year honors went to Stanford's Donald Sage and Arizona's Tara Chaplin. Stanford's Vin Lananna was named the Men's Coach of the Year and Arizona's Dave Murray was named the Women's Coach of the Year. The honors were decided by a vote of the conference cross country coaches.
Duke is the third Sun Devil in school history to be honored with a Pac-10 post-season award. Last year, Lisa Aguilera was named the Pac-10 Women's Cross Country Athlete of the Year, while head coach Walt Drenth was named Women's Coach of the Year in 1999 and 2000.