I grew up going to Minnesota Football games at the Metrodome with my grandpa, who was the starting quarterback for the Gophers in the late 40's. From my earliest years I wanted to represent my home state of Minnesota as a student-athlete. I even have a picture of myself as a toddler in a Canadian tuxedo with a Goldy the Gopher tattoo on my hand. The moment Coach Plasencia gave me a call the summer before my senior year of high school, I knew where I was going.

I grew up in a small town about an hour north of Minneapolis. When I stepped foot on campus in the fall of 2013 my eyes were opened to so much more than I could have ever imagined. For the first time in my life I was immersed into a diverse and ultimately welcoming brotherhood that opened my eyes to so much after growing up in such a small town. Everyday I learned from my coaches and teammates on and off of the track, and ultimately it was the lessons off of the track that will forever leave a lasting impact. As cliche as it is, we were one massive family that no matter what was going on outside of the locker room, we knew we had each other to rely on. It is heartbreaking knowing that any boys growing up in Minnesota competing in track & field will not be able to find a family like I did in Minnesota Men's Track & Field.

The tradition of Minnesota Men's Track & Field is unrivaled by so few, and to see the elimination of the program at the states flagship university in the city of Minneapolis, which has been the epicenter of social injustice lately in a tough one to swallow. The state of Minnesota needs track & field at the University of Minnesota because it provides opportunity to everyone and it is one of the most diverse sports in the entire world.