The Cross country program is one of the most decorated and successful at UVU. The program is building on its success thanks to athletes like Jason Lynch, who was named WAC athlete of the week and has helped his team win in years past.
Lynch is a Utah native who competed at Hillcrest high school. He is relatively new to the sport, compared to his competitors who have been running since the early years of high school, while Lynch has been running since his senior year of high school.
Lynch debated whether to play football or run in high school. He didn’t want to split his efforts between both, so he chose to just focus on one. He chose cross country and had an immediate impact on his team.
Lynch placed second at the 5A state cross country championships, was named All-Region and All-State, was a Region 2 champion and helped his high school team place second in region and fourth in state.
Because of his success, many college programs took notice. Utah Valley, BYU, Brown University, Yale and SUU were some of the schools that wanted Lynch. The young runner flirted with the idea of going to Brown originally.
Fortunately Brown sent the letter too late and the admission deadline passed. This paved the way for a great recruiting trip to local UVU, and the rest as the cliché goes, is history.
“It felt like the right place,” Lynch recalled about his decision. “I wanted to go to a place where I could make an impact—to come to a team and immediately help them have success.”
Immediately Lynch helped the program do just that. In his first season as a Wolverine in 2009, Lynch was named the Great West Conference Male Newcomer of the Year and named to the GWC First Team All-Conference. He also helped his team win its first conference championship.
The success Lynch saw as freshman was followed by a season in which he redshirted, a medical redshirt and an LDS mission to Brazil. He returned home motivated to continue the success experienced during his sophomore campaign.
“Ultimately, I want to qualify for nationals,” Lynch explained.
Qualifying for nationals would make Lynch the first Wolverine to do so in the history of the cross country program. Lynch has already set his personal record by finishing second at the Utah State Invitational and hopes to continue to make personal records and help build the program.
“I want to leave a winning legacy,” Lynch said. “My recruiting class, I feel, was the best in school history—not only in school history but around the state. We can make this team good in a while.”
The team will surely have the opportunity to win championships with that type of leadership. Lynch is confident in himself and his team as they plan to continue their conference dominance in the WAC.
“We want to win the first WAC championship,” Lynch said. “Because our season ends first –we want to set the bar for the other programs and help motivate them too.”
This display of confidence shows that Jason Lynch is not only capable of motivating his own team, but other UVU sports as well as he looks to bring honor and championships to UVU.
Garrett is native of Orem, Utah. He is a graduate of Timpanogos High School. While in high school, Garrett enjoyed playing sports and was a double lettered athlete in football in wrestling. After a short stint of college football at Dixie State, Garrett made his way back to Utah Valley in pursuit of his aspirations of becoming a sports journalist. Garrett has been contributing for the UVU Review for three years and has covered sports, specializing in wrestling. Garrett is married to Jodi Coleman and served an LDS mission to Baguio Philippines. You can follow him on twitter @legendgary