The Cowboy Jamboree is a tradition for the Oklahoma State cross-country team.
Since 1937, the team hosts the meet at the OSU home course.
This is the first official meet for the team as a whole. Earlier in the season, certain members of the team ran in the Cowboy Preview. Since then, the team has been chopping at the bit to get started.
The Jamboree is like a warm-up lap, a good way to knock off some rust and get into the racing mentality, OSU coach Dave Smith said.
“Kickoff to the competitive part of the season,” Smith said.
The home-course advantage will work in OSU’s favor. Not only will OSU runners have the support of local friends and families, the Cowboys and Cowgirls will already have an idea of what is to come in the course.
“It’s the one time a year we can count on running at home in front of friends and family,” Smith said.
With many steps and hills, the course has a European flare to it, typically a more difficult course.
“I think this is a really challenging course,” Smith said.
Men’s cross-country is currently ranked No. 5 in the NCAA, making the Cowboys at the top of the list for the Big 12.
“Nice to have respect and recognition from other coaches in the NCAA,” Smith said.
One Cowboy to remember is Cerake Geberkidane, a sophomore from Colorado.
Although he is young, he is impressive. Geberkidane is expected to lead the team soon Smith said, adding that he is becoming high-level quickly.
Women’s cross-country is No. 28 in the NCAA rankings. Smith chalks this up to simply having a young team and no real meets to prove themselves in yet.
A new hopeful for the season is Katie Spencer, a true freshman from Nebraska. Smith said she should move from team workouts to competitions smoothly, saying she is one to watch out for.
“Across the board improvements,” Smith said. “Really exited to see where the team can go.”
Saturday, the women will start off a day of racing at 8 a.m. with a 5-killometer, followed by the men’s 8k at 8:35 a.m.