Brandon Hippe: Palmer Ridge To Portland State

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Brandon Hippe's Best Marks

1,600 - 4:38

3,200 - 9:37

3 mile - 14:32

5k - 15:25

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Q) Talk about the recruitment process - what other schools were you looking at, and how did you come to choosing the Portland State? 

My recruitment process started very removed from running aspects of college - just looking at schools with reputable engineering programs. My list was decently large for a while, including Syracuse, Cornell, Vanderbilt, University of Colorado Boulder, and the University of Washington. Portland State was one of the last schools to come across my radar. Eventually, I just started crossing schools off the list. It came down to Portland State, Colorado State, and Washington University in St Louis. My visit to Portland State in December was what sealed the deal for me. Talking with the coaches about their vision for the program and how I fit into that vision, combined with seeing the growing team culture there sealed the deal for me. 

 Q) What do you plan to study at Portland State?  

I plan on studying Computer Engineering at Portland State. 

 Q) You had a breakthrough season this past fall, what would say attributed to your improvements?  

I think a lot of it was due to frustration from prior seasons. I just barely missed qualifying for the state 3200 my sophomore year, and then barely missed qualifying again as a junior. I kept seeing the huge improvements of other runners all around the state and wondering why I wasn't able to make similar improvements. Heading into this past summer I decided to really bump up the intensity of my training, both with increased mileage and faster training runs. I'm really glad it worked out for me and I'm excited to see the improvements I can make on the track.  

Q) What would you consider to be your main event, and what event do you see yourself focusing on at Portland State? 

Anything on the cross-country course is really my bread and butter. On the track it has to be the 3200, it's a beast but I've run it so much by now that it's strange to me to be at a track meet watching it. At Portland State, I'll probably focus on 5000, but I'm definitely willing to try out 10000 and steeple as well. 

Q) Could you share any goals you have for the upcoming track season?  

At a minimum I want to finally qualify for state in the 3200, the third try's the charm, right? I'd also like to take a shot at breaking Palmer Ridge's school 3200 record of 9:19.28.  

Q) What would your favorite high school moment be (so far)? 

It's really hard to pick one, but I can narrow it down to two. The first was Woodbridge my sophomore year. It was a meet we'd never been to before and we really had no idea what we were capable of. The team didn't go in with any expectations, and seeing we'd finished in second behind Mountain Vista was a very welcome surprise. The other was state cross my junior year. Everyone on the team (including myself) was injured or sick at some point of that season. The first time everyone on our varsity ran in the same meet completely healthy was at Regionals. Everything was finally starting to go right for us and we figured we had a pretty good chance of being back-to-back state champions if we all had good days, which we did. The team competition was very stiff and we knew it would be close, and the moment we finally learned we'd won was an incredible moment of pure happiness and relief. 

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