Several of Pennsylvania's top track and cross country stars have opted to sign their Letters of Intent during the early signing period, and put the pressure of a decision behind them to enjoy the remainder of their senior years.
Craig and Brad Miller, who burst onto the scene in 2002 as freshmen in name and age only, are going their separate ways. Craig is choosing to join the nation's top program at the University of Wisconsin, while Brad will be joining a program that is building anew, beginning with next year's freshman class - Syracuse University.
"I didn't want to be the best on the team my freshman year", Craig says. With two former Foot Locker champs and others who had excelled in high school, he'll join a program currently ranked #1 in the US. He says the university setting will give him maximum options for selecting a major, and that in addition to the challenges from the team members themselves, "the coach is great, and there are nice areas to train."
Brad will be joining four-year rival Curtis Bixler of Cumberland Valley with the Orangemen, where Miller will major in business. "With (former Auburn assisant) coach Fox there now, and a new AD, they're trying to build a national caliber program. I am looking forward to helping them do that."
While each will miss the other, they both are ready for new environments. Craig thinks the experience will be good for Brad. "We kind of agreed we didn't want the same school, unless it worked that we both liked the same one." Brad says that having Craig as a training partner has helped him to realize he can run with anyone.
The two will race in the New York Roadrunners Club XC Championships Sunday, November 13 at Van Cortlandt Park -- Craig to reacquaint himself with the course, and Brad, to see it for the first time. A 2004 Finalist, Craig is pulling for his brother to make the Foot Locker Nationals, which will include the top 10 finishers at the November 26th Regional. But they won't be racing together. Brad says Craig likes to lead, while his style is more conservative. Any way you look at it, you can be sure the other runners will be making sure they know where the Millers are. They'll have to look twice.
Also signing Nationals Letters of Intent this week were: West Catholic star Latavia Thomas, who will take her talents to a top program of LSU (Louisiana State University); 2005 AAA State Cross Country champ Liz Costello of Conestoga, to the University of Princeton; jump/sprint talent Rachel Gehret of Altoona, to the University of Louisville; Lindsay Regan, Easton, to UCLA; and Youngsville's Kyle Jones, to the Air Force Academy.