Sophomore Kevin White of Loyola’s track and field team won the John Tierney Classic in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on Jan. 21, by running 1 mile in 4:14.12 and beating Alec Miller of Marquette University by .4 seconds.
One week later, at the Black and Gold Premier, White set two more personal bests, winning the 600-meter with a time of 1:20.32 and finishing sixth in the mile with a time of 4:10.9. After setting a personal best in two straight meets, White is determined to reach another milestone.
“Before I leave Loyola, I absolutely have to break the 4-minute mile,” said White. “It’s just something I’ve set my sights on and something I really want to achieve.”
Head coach Bob Thurnhoffer said he firmly believes that the 4-minute mile is within White’s reach, sooner rather than later.
“I’ve been so impressed with his humility and his work ethic, and to me, he’s the next sub-4 miler here at Loyola. Don’t be surprised if it happens very soon,” said Thurnhoffer.
White said he’s been successful as a sophomore because of preparation and being more comfortable competing at the collegiate level. He said he thinks the success is especially due to the coaching, which he said helped him develop into a dominant college runner.
“Coaching changes have brought higher intensity to practice. I’ve been doing more jumps and circuit training, which I think has made me a lot more explosive while maintaining my aerobic base,” White said. “I really like what Thurnhoffer has done to this team. We’re really well-rounded, and that plays into everyone’s performances and makes us just a better team overall.”
On top of the personal records and first-place finishes in back-to-back meets, White was named the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) Scholar-Athlete of the week on Jan. 31.
As the indoor season comes to a close before spring and outdoor events begin, White and Loyola turn their attention to the Meyo Invitational in Notre Dame, Indiana, which is set to take place Feb. 3-4. White said he was adamant about staying focused and not letting the win in Milwaukee change his mentality. He said he simply wants to take this season one race at a time, but that he’s hopeful and excited for the future.
“I can’t wait to see what the rest of the season holds,” said White. “I don’t think as a team we’ve even hit our stride yet.”