Cal Banta: Air Academy To Colorado State

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Cal Banta's Best Marks

400 - 50.71

800 - 1:54.61

1,600 - 4:16.25

3,200 - 9:49

5k - 15:20

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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 Colorado State?

I did a few unofficial visits while we in Arizona over Thanksgiving break of 2017, but for me it really started upon the conclusion of my junior track season. I got the privilege to speak with a number of schools, including Iowa State University, Oklahoma State University, Stanford University, University of Portland, The Air Force Academy, and Adams State University. There were a lot of factors to consider but Colorado State especially stood out to me in a few areas. CSU has an excellent Health and Exercise Science program, the team's culture was focused yet really friendly and comforting; Coach Siemers really knows what he's doing and he is focused on my progression throughout my entire college career, and lastly, Fort Collins is close enough to home that I can come home for the holidays but far enough that I can experience independent life.

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

I plan to study Health and Exercise Science with a Sports Medicine Concentration. I may also decide to minor in Psychology.

Q) You've consistently been in the top tier of high school distance running your entire high school career, what would you say attributed to this?

I have running competitively since I was 10 or 11 which has allowed me to compete well and then build upon those experiences with consistent training. Luckily for me, I have typically had runners at the "next level" to train with through Kokopelli in the off-season and also on my own high school team. Running at Air Academy has given me the opportunity to run under a great coach, Chuck Schwartz, and alongside some of the best runners in the state. Those things have played a major role in my success with running thus far and are what will continue to make Air Academy a team to watch out for in the future.  

Q) You've had success in everything from the 400 on up to the 5k, what would you consider to be your main event, and what event do you see yourself focusing on at Colorado State?

I have always had fun doing the 5k in cross country but I really enjoy letting the wheels turn during the track season. I have fun doing the 400 but I think the 1600 and 800 are a nice balance between speed and endurance and I would consider those to be my main events. I will be a part of the cross country team, running 5Ks, 8Ks and 10Ks for Colorado State and on the track I will likely compete in anything from the 800m to the 3K.

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

My main goal is to race competitively and confidently. In conjunction with my own effort, I want to make sure to do my part as a teammate and support my team as best I can by being uplifting and encouraging to my fellow Kadets and competing alongside them to score points at the State meet.

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

To beat two of the records previously held for several years at Air Academy was pretty sweet, but I'd have to say that building relationships with other athletes in the running community even tops that for me. Over the past 3½ years I've gotten the opportunity to meet some pretty amazing people through running, and although some of them have gone to college or moved to different states, we still keep in touch and get together to run when they are back in town. The Colorado high school running community is so supportive and kind and I'll miss being a part of it after this year, but I consider myself lucky to have been a part of it as long as I have. And who knows... maybe I'll get the chance to run with some of these guys again at CSU!

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