There are several rankings of the colleges with the most "tradition" out there.
I wonder which 20 college track and field programs have the best tradition? Men only, since women started only relatively recently. Besides, the TSU Tigerbelles are an easy #1 anyhow!
I'm not an expert in track and field in any way, which is why I try to soak up info from "our favorite magazine," but I'm guessing the list of top traditions in track starts with Southern Cal. After that, how would the list go?
The football lists are put together considering several factors: total wins, national titles, bowl wins, AP rankings, All-Americans, facilities, fan interest, great coaches, etc., etc........
Track could use a similar formula. National titles, NCAA individual titles, great coaches, facilities, fan interest, dual meet record, etc.
What is that organization like now? Is it like it was when Frank Shorter was there? I've heard that Gainesville is not the ideal place to train for distance running, so I'm guessing that the FTC is not like it used to be.
As for Gainesville so high on the list, what about Los Angeles, Austin, Philly, Lawrence -- even Knoxville? Shouldn't they all be higher?
The FTC had a membership around 200-300 in the early 70's but with the coverage of the elite athletes, that's all many people heard about. Even I thought that the FTC was really small. It wasn't. Think the emphasis with the FTC today is on general fitness as opposed to the elite performer/performances. There are still many world-clas runners in town though. See many of the top Russian women in town. Dennis Mitchell lives in Gainesville and has his stable of runners he coaches on the track. Don't see that many of the elite folks these days as it is getting to be very hot here. Those cities you mentioned are great running cities (let's not forget Chicago and the Chicago Track Club) but why I thought about Eugene and Gainesville is there was (or at least seemed to be) a bigger concentration of elite athletes in these towns.
great history (Bill Rodgers)
good club system, not just one
great local USATF organization
the one & only Boston Marathon
three, count 'em three banked indoor tracks within the city limits
we even have some decent meets occasionally
>has anyone ever heard of the New York Athletic
Club ? Loved those old winged jerseys.
Also the New York Pioneer Club.
The whites ran for NYAC, the blacks for the Pioneers. Nothing to cheer about on that score.<
The NYAC is very much alive. In fact, if you check the entries for the National Championships next week you'll see they have a number of athletes competing for them. They're one of the few viable clubs out there that do not bear the name of a shoe company or other commercial enterprise.
The NYAC's membership policies were indeed once notorious. In New York, blacks and Jews ran for the NY Pioneers or other local clubs because they were excluded from the NYAC, which had better facilities and club support. The NYAC used to hold a major indoor meet in Madison Square Garden, but in the late 1960's they attracted the attention of civil rights demonstrators. Rather than change their policies, they stopped sponsoring the meet. Things finally changed some time in the 1980's when the club opened up membership to groups that had previously been barred. I believe Antonio McKay may have been the first Black runner to compete for the NYAC but there were a few others as well.
Today, the Club is still there. They have maintained their traditional club facilities on Central Park South. They have a large membership, mostly white males. And they remain active in sports, including athletics.