DELAWARE, Ohio -- Satisfied? Marcus Newsom? Not a chance.
Sure, Wartburg had just edged Wisconsin-Oshkosh by a couple of points to clinch its third consecutive NCAA Division III women’s outdoor track and field national championship. It was thee Knights fourth title in the past six years, and fifth overall.
That’s the stuff of legend, but Newsom doesn’t appear to be the sort to rest on his laurels. There’s more out there, another challenge waiting just down the way. To him, three titles in a row is but a good start.
When does he shift focus to winning a fourth outdoor championship in a row? That’s an easy one.
“About an hour down the road,” Newsom said, who also has a trio of DIII indoor titles to his credit. … just now in a row. “And I mean that. I will start looking at the Iowa state high school meet results this weekend. Normally, it’s the weekend before. I wasn’t able to be there, so I’ll start looking at the recruiting class for the following year, motivating my kids who are returning and get ready to go for another year.”
If there’s a notion to think that’s nothing more than the bravado of a victorious coach fresh off a big win, it’s not. Newsom is as serious as he could have been.“You’ve got to start over every single year,” he added. “When we walk out this gate, this will be in the history books. As soon as we walk out the gate and get on the bus to head home and watch these young ladies graduate from college and walk across that stage, we’ve got to start over.”
Newsom would appear to be an emotional kind of guy. He’s got a unique yell that carries across a stadium as he encourages his runners on the track, and afterward, his voice cracked as he attempted to collect his thoughts.
Yes, he wants more championships, but he would be the very last person to discount this one.
“Twenty years ago as a young coach, I watched teams compete at this level,” he said. “As a coach, you have those dreams and those goals to get a bunch of strong young women who believe in that dream, who are willing to put in that work. It means the world to me as a coach. It reminds me why I’m doing what I do, the countless hours away from my wife, my three kids.
“It’s a great reminder of why I’m in this great profession as a coach. Oh, man, it means the world to look back and to remember all those championships I watched Oshkosh and Wheaton win, and to have a goal and a dream to believe that we can do that is pretty special.”
The championship was close, but never did Newsom doubt his student-athletes. Each of the Wartburg competitors qualified for the meet scored points, each taking home All-American honors.
“From that regard, it’s truly special to understand you can have that many women who believe,” Newsom continued. “That is exactly what happened. Man, it’s just amazing, just amazing. I’m truly amazed with that.”
Every successful coach is asked how one championship compares with others, and Newsom didn’t dodge it this time.
“Each one of them are different,” he concluded. “Our first championship really had some athletes who were extremely hungry. They had been a part of an indoor championship and not an outdoor championship. We won indoor by record points. We won outdoor by record points, then all of a sudden, they graduated.
“A year ago, people were like, ‘There’s no way they’ll be as talented. There’s no way they’ll be in a position to win the championship.’ All of a sudden, we were able to go and do it last year. Then, we do it again this year with a whole different group of ladies.”
Newsom will lose several seniors off this squad, so it was right back to the drawing board. … just as soon as he went out the gate and boarded the bus back to Iowa.