As the victors two years in a row the Florida A&M University cross-country men’s team is going into the Atlanta Classic meet with optimism despite the recent injuries of players on the team.
“We have a couple of guys hurt,” said head cross-country coach Rey Robinson.
The players hurt are Shuaib Winters and Paul Williams.
“They got just minor injuries,” Robinson said.
Despite injuries, Robinson said that the team has been successful so far.
“We’re having a great season at this point,” Robinson said. “We ran three meets, they won two of them.”
The team has been preparing for this weekends meet at their regular practices.
“We have just been planning to keep everyone healthy,” Robinson said. “We just trying to get everyone healthy for the MEAC cross country championship. Right now we’re ranked number three.”
Daquam Lee, 19, a sophomore student from Miami, said the team has been putting in mileage in practice in order to “keep our stamina and endurance.”
Robinson said right now there are three guys in the top division for the MEAC.
Winters ranked in second, and both Lee and Carlos Franklin are sixth.
Robinson said as far as this team’s competition in Atlanta, everyone has a fair chance to win.
“We look at everyone,” Robinson said. “Everyone has to the potential to do well.”
Even though the team has met challenges past teams in the last two years, some team members feel this year might be more of a challenge.
“We were hoping to win the whole thing before our injuries,” Lee said, “We can still win our division, but it will still be a little harder to win the whole thing.”
Winters, who has a minor hip injury, said he feels bad about being injured.
“I feel I let the team down,” said Winters, 18, a freshman civil engineering student from Atlanta. “They’re going to step up and balance it [the team injuries]”
Winters was an individual winner at 28:27.70 in the Albany Invitational. He was also an individual winner at the JU Dolphin Tri-Meet at 16:57.00
Even with the injuries, Lee wants the team to be successful in Atlanta.
“I feel we can win it,” Lee said. “Even with our injuries, hopefully we can pull through and get the win”