Captain Q & A with Cross Country's Collier Lawrence

Sept. 4, 2007

Collier Lawrence is a senior on the WSU cross country team and captains a squad of 14 women. Lawrence is originally from Reno, Nevada.

How did you get started running cross country?
I started in middle school because I needed something to do after school. I didn't really practice; I just ran in races. Then my freshman year, my teachers told me I needed to compete in cross country. It was something to do and so I decided to keep on competing.

How did you end up at WSU?
The head coach, Jason Drake, started recruiting me my junior year. It came down to here and Colorado. Coach Drake had been at Colorado before he was at WSU and so I decided to go to Wazzu and see what happened. I really liked the program and the coach; Coach Drake was definitely a deciding factor.

What has been your most memorable moment during Cougar cross country?
The regional meet last year was really memorable just because it was so muddy. It was a ridiculously outrageous race. Everyone was covered in mud and there were girls with no shoes; I'll always remember it.

What is your pre-race routine?
The night before I have pizza with chicken and vegetables and the day of the race, I go for a little run and get coffee and some breakfast. Oh, and I always have to have gum before the start of the race, either Orbit or Stride. If I don't have it, I'll freak out.

What are you expecting out of the season?
Our whole team wants to make it to nationals. It has been the ultimate goal since this year's senior class came in. When we were freshmen, our dream was to make it to nationals. So far this season, we've really set the tone in practice and we've been training with that goal in mind. We have a lot of talented people; it's all just a matter of getting it to click on the same day.
If you could take over practice for a day and put Coach Drake in your shoes, what would you do?
I would do a hard workout, a bunch of 200's with no rest. You just go until you can't do them anymore.

What has been the most challenging part of competing in cross country at the Division I level?
There are just so many people. When we go to pre-nationals there is something like 500 girls in a race. There is a lot of competition and honestly, I think the Pac-10 is the best distance conference in the nation with Stanford, Arizona State, Oregon, Washington. There are a lot of really good girls; it's not like we can go to a race knowing we can win. It's always a battle.

What are your post-college plans?
I still have another year of school left but I would like to be a volunteer assistant next season. I'd also like to keep training and see if I can run after college in a few races.

What is one fun fact about you?
I've jumped off an 80 foot cliff into water. Someone told me I wouldn't do it. And I said, 'Yes, I will,' and so I did.

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