Edward Cheserek of St. Benedict's Prep, the No. 1 high school distance runner in the nation and the best distance runner in New Jersey high school history, announced his eagerly anticipated college choice tonight.
And the winner is Oregon!!!!!
He made his decision official just a few hours before he broke the national high school indoor two-mile record by running 8:39.15 in the elite men's race to place 8th at the Millrose Games at the 168th Street Armory in New York City. The old record was 8:40.0 by Gerry Lindgren of Rogers High in Spokane, Wash. in 1964. It was the oldest boys high school national indoor record in the book.
``I felt Oregon was the best fit for me to continue my education and my running career," said Cheserek, who turned 19 on Feb. 2. "I feel good about my decision. It wasn't an easy one, but I'm excited about what Oregon has to offer."
Cheserek signed his letter of intent to attend Oregon on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. and immediately informed Oregon distance coach Andy Powell of his decision.
"Education and running is all I'm concerned right now," Cheserek said. "I want to thank all the schools that have given me the chance to visit. They were all great institutions."
St. Benedict's Prep coach Marty Hannon said that Oregon is a perfect fit for Cheserek.
"Edward is a great kid and had some wonderful choices,'' said Hannon. ``They were all great schools, but Edward found that the University of Oregon was the best fit for him. They have a great track program and tradition with outstanding athletes and coaches, but most of all, it's a place where Edward will get an excellent education. Edward felt in his heart this was the place for him."
In Cheserek, Oregon is getting one of the most accomplished and talented high school distance runners to ever compete in the U.S.
When Cheserek won the FL national title last month he became just the 4th boy in the 34 year history of the meet to win it twice and raised his career total to 8 national titles.
CHESEREK'S PERSONAL BESTS
Mile-4:02.21 2012 indoors
Two-mile-8:39.15 2013 indoors-National Indoor Record
5K-13:57.04 - 2012-National Indoor Record.
CHESEREK'S 8 NATIONAL TITLES
June 17-Finished first in the 5,000 in a meet record 14:24.75 at the New Balance Nationals at the University of North Carolina A&T in Greensboro, N.C.
June 19-Cheserek splits 4:02.30 to bring St. Benedict's across first in the distance medley in a NJ record and US #3 all-time 9:51.97 to edge West Windsor-Plainsboro North, second in 9:54.78, at the New Balance Nationals at the University of North Carolina A&T in Greensboro, N.C.
Dec. 10- Won the Foot Locker national title in 14:51.5 as he edged Futsum Zeinasellassie of Indianapolis, Indiana, who finished a step behind a 14:52.1.
March 9-10-11-At the New Balance Nationals in N,Y., Cheserek on Friday night, Cheserek anchored the winning DM with a 4:07.5 to bring St. Benedict's across first in 10:10.08. On Saturday he split 1:50.5 on the U.S all-time #4 sprint medley that won in a NJ state record 3:25.88. Then on Sunday Cheserek won the 2-mile in 8:50.53. Cheserek was chosen as the Outstanding Boys Athlete of the meet.
June 15-Cheserek runs 8:55.12 to win the 2-mile at the New Balance Nationals at the University of North Carolina A&T in Greensboro, N.C.
Dec. 8-Won his second straight Foot Locker national title in 14:58.3 at Balboa Park in San Diego.
April-2011-Cheserek split 4:05.8, No. 7 all-time in the 118 year history of the meet, to rally St. Benedict's Prep to fifth place in the distance medley.
April-2012-Cheserek anchored the DM with a 4:06.2 carry as he rallied from a 10 second deficit to give his team the victory in 10:07.76. Cheserek was named MVP of the meet for the relay events.