Les grins; he is
incorrigible. "He still doesn't look very fast. I think we can beat 'em.
Beat Roach. What d'you think, Monster?"
nickname derives more from his competitive instinct than from his appearance—is
the only senior on the team and normally our top runner, but he is recovering
from mononucleosis. He mumbles gruffly, and Les jogs over to pacify him.
We come slowly
around a field and back to the starting area and gather around Coach. He is a
doctor who's connected with Vanderbilt University's medical school and is
himself a competitive runner, donating his time to coach us. He will be 40 this
year, but he looks younger.
"How do you
He watches me for
a minute while I stretch. I trained hard over the summer. We both know I should
run well today. I hope I do. I know I am thinking about it too much.
He turns to
Caldwell. "Are you ready to go, Bill?"
"Is that your
a freshman this year."