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bleedCrimson.net Weekly Coach Richburg Interview :: 04/16/08 | bleedCrimson.net :: Your Source for NMSU Aggies Sports News

bleedCrimson.net Weekly Coach Richburg Interview :: 04/16/08

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bleedCrimson.net will be conducting interviews with Aggie women's track and field head coach Orin Richburg throughout the 2008 season as Coach Richburg builds the Aggie track and field program. In this week's interview Coach Richburg recaps the Aggies' performance at the UTEP Invitational and looks ahead to this weekend's meet at Colorado State.

bleedCrimson.net: Can you talk a little bit about this past weekend's meet at the UTEP Invitational?
Orin Richburg: It was another opportunity for us, we had Kansas State, Houston, UTEP and since it's their big invitational meet they had some of the more elite athletes that compete at a higher level. We had a chance to go down and get in that mix of trying to be involved around some of the athletes that put some real good marks on the board and trying to get our young ladies to understand that consistency is the name of the game. You have to be able to compete at a higher level, whatever that level is for you as an athlete and you have to be able to do that week in and week out. I think we just need to expose them to a little bit more of that tough competition, not saying that they didn't have it before but they just need to learn how to respond to that and go out and give us a good effort.

bc.net: What positives have you seen that your girls have been able to take away from competing against the tougher competition?
OR: One thing is that they're understand not to be in awe of who you're come against. You have some good collegiate teams and we see those teams like UTEP and see the things they do, they have a lot of foreign athletes, those guys compete at a higher level and our kids can see those athletes perform at a higher level and understand that they have that ability to be there and we're just trying to get them to understand that you can't be in awe of your opponents no matter who they are or what they do. Just trying to get them in and have them line up against those folks and really be ready to go and really give that effort that it takes to be there. Each of us has a little different ability level but we have to go in and make sure whatever ability we have, we try and compete at that level, whatever our abilities are. If we can do that, that helps us a little bit to get a little more confidence. That's one of the things the young ladies in the past have done and it's nothing that they're not used to, we're just trying to reinforce the things that they're used to and try to get them to understand that there has to be a consistency. You can't go and be up one day and down the next day. That's not the way you compete in order to compete at a higher level.

bc.net: Caprice Bradshaw had a 3rd place finish in the 3000 meter steeplechase, can you explain for those unfamiliar with some of the events what the steeplechase event is?
OR: The steeplechase is a 28 barriers and 7 water jumps, that means on each lap you have to manipulate 'x' number of barriers and water jumps. So that means she has to go over a barrier that has a pit and it has water in it and jump into that and keep running and jump over the steeple barrier. It's a 3000 meter race that a total of 35 jumps in the race. It's something you have to really focus in on and make sure that you're driving into the barriers and you don't slow down going into the barriers because the barriers are big barriers and if you hit your knee or foot it will be very painful.

I think this was her first time doing the steeplechase, it gives us some good signs of someone moving up a little bit in terms of what we need to be able to do to be successful at the conference level.

bc.net: Talk a little bit about your meet coming up in Fort Collins, CO.
OR: We're going over to Colorado State this weekend, Adams State who's a good Division II school will probably be there, Air Force will probably come down so it gives us a chance to see some teams from other parts of the country. We've seen a little bit of the southwest with Houston and Kansas State in the midwest and a few of the California teams when were were in Arizona so now this gives us a chance to see Air Force, Colorado State, Adams State. This give us a chance to go in and see how we match up against people we haven't seen this season in the outdoor. We did see Air Force and Colorado State indoors but now we get to see them outside. This gives us an opportunity to go in give our kids a chance to say these are some people that we need to be very competitive against because those teams will be in our region in case some of our young ladies are able to make some regional qualifying marks and get to the regionals, These would be some of the people you'd see at the regionals even though they're all in different conferences.

bc.net: Las Cruces has some altitude but how much effect will the difference in altitude and the thinner air in Fort Collins have on the athletes?
OR: Coach Harkins and Coach Gregory talked about it with our distance kids and they said it shouldn't be because we're at 3800 or 3900 feet and they're a little used to it. It shouldn't be that much because we are at an area that has some altitude and that shouldn't be too much of a difference for us. It'd be different if we were going from zero altitude to there. We don't think it'll have as much impact as it would on someone who hasn't been in that kind of environment before.

bc.net: Does going from a warmer climate like Las Cruces to a colder climate like Fort Collins have any effect on the athletes?
OR: That's one of the things we try and prepare the kids for. You can't let your environment affect your performance. Let's say you're a construction worker, sometimes you work in warm weather, sometimes you work in cold weather. You can't be any different in the two climates in terms of what you're trying to do with your job. So their job is to go run as well as they can. They have to make sure that they understand that the weather is not going to cause you to run as well as you need to run. If you go in and start thinking that the weather is a little more chilly than you're used to then you're not going to do well. If you go in thinking the weather is hotter than you're used to then you're not going to do well. You have to be able to adjust to whatever environment you're going into and be very positive in terms of what you're looking at and what you're trying to do to prepare yourself.

We have the conference championships in Boise, we could go to Boise and the weather could be cold in May. If we go in saying that the cold weather is going to be a factor then we're not going to do as well as we're capable of doing. We try to get them to say no matter what the factors are you can't even let that come into your thinking. When you're doing that you're having a built in excuse and we try to eliminate those things before we get to where we're going.