Sports, UCM Sports

Ian Frazier’s senior season is just a starting line

Ian Frazier has been the top finishing Mule in each of the three meets that the cross-country team has competed in so far this season, so it’s no surprise that Frazier’s summer heading into the season was entirely consumed by cross-country training. Frazier, however, was not training himself; he was training members of Team USA.

Frazier spent his summer interning with Hoka One One Northern Arizona Elite, a professional running organization. He served as an intern coach alongside the program’s president Ben Rosario.

The athletes that Frazier coached consisted mostly of 25 to 35 year-olds who have aspirations to join US national teams and Olympic teams.

“The leadership role was odd because the people were older than me,” Frazier laughed. “They are also just way better than me. These are people who have run several minutes faster in a 5k and 10k (race); people who have worn the Team USA jersey at the national level.”

Despite being somewhat overwhelmed by the prestige of the athletes in attendance, Frazier was active in his role at Northern Arizona Elite. The training style shared key similarities to that which Frazier was familiar with, enabling Frazier to still coach athletes with higher skill sets.

The internship also required Frazier to focus on spreading the sport of cross-country. Frazier explained that the sport suffers between Olympic cycles and that the solution to this problem is to raise interest among youth. He worked to bring the sport to larger audience by teaming with organizations such Fit Kids, a group that promotes physical activity among children.

“Taking knowledge form the professional ranks to the recreational is always good,” Frazier said. “The more people you get interested in the sport, the better, and the more they are going to enjoy it.”

Frazier was also provided an opportunity to blog on Northern Arizona Elite’s website. The blog served as a platform for Frazier to share his personal thoughts on cross-country to the company’s followers.

“They allowed me to have a platform to blog and spread the message of me being a huge fan of the sport and kind of being thrust into this professional environment and just really being able to show how universal our sport is,” Frazier said.

Frazier explained that the internship and its various aspects reassured him that he is on the right path. His dream is to one day pursue a career in coaching.

“I would definitely like to coach someday whether it be high school, collegiate, or professional ranks. It doesn’t really matter to me. I just want to be in this sport my whole life and be contributing to it. “

So while this may be Frazier’s final season on the Mules cross-country team, it is simply the beginning of what appears to be a life-long commitment to the sport of cross-country.

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