Men's Track

Q&A with Nathan Barksdale

Nathan Barksdale

Nathan Barksdale

May 9, 2006

Sophomore Nathan Barksdale sat down with Farrah Segaloff to talk about track, college, and summer plans.

Where are originally from?
Valparaiso, Indiana, about thirty minutes outside of Chicago.

Do you find it hard to be so far away from home?
When I first got to college yes, but now it's just routine. I love being away from home, just growing up and feeling independent.

What's the biggest difference between home and Amherst?
Probably that I'm closer to Chicago back home. I'm about thirty minutes away from the city back home and here I'm about an hour and a half away from Boston so it' hard being in the middle of nowhere sometimes.

Have you always been involved in track?
I ran a couple of races when I was about 8 or 9 in the summer just for fun. And then I seriously got involved with it in middle school with sixth grade track. Then I've been running track for about nine years. I've done it for a long time.

Before a meet, do you have any special routines or superstitions that you do?
I always have to eat a Powerbar before any of my races and if my dad's at the meet I have to look at him before I start.

Do your parents try to go to a lot of your meets?
Last year my dad made quiet a few, probably about 5 or 6. This year, he's been doing a lot of stuff so he's only made it to about 2 meets, but they try to make it out as much as possible.

Are there any other sports you played competitively growing up?
I've always played baseball, basketball, and track. I quit baseball to actually run track in high school.

Is there anyone in particular who encouraged you, or influenced you to run track?
My uncle. He used to run track for Michigan State and I've always wanted to be like him and fast like him. He's a great athlete and I've always wanted to run like him.

What brought you to UMass?
Originally it was the sport management program. Then when I came out here, I just talked with the coaches and I just thought it was the best of both worlds to be able to run and be a part of sport management.

Why do you want to major in sport management?
There are so many possibilities with sport [management]. I love sports and I love the business side of it. There's so many things you can do in law, facility management, event management. I just love it all.

Is it hard balancing track and schoolwork?
Sometimes because I'm involved in a lot of stuff and I do a lot of things. Sometimes I just find myself not going back to my room and just always being on the go and always having something to do. But overall I enjoy it and so it's not really too hard if you enjoy it.

Is it hard traveling so much on the weekends for meet?
Freshman year it was kind of hard because I wasn't used to it and the weeks went by so fast. But now it's easier because I know what to expect. Then again, I love it.

What are your current plans for the summer?
I'm working an operations internship for the American Junior Golf Association in Atlanta. So I'll be working their golf tournaments, traveling the nation, and helping them set up.

What's your favorite sports movie?
Hoosiers and Rudy, just because they're from Indiana.

Do you have any track plans for the future?
Not really. I want to run here for four years and then I think that's going to be the conclusion.

Where do you see yourself in ten years?
As a sports and entertainment lawyer living in Chicago.

What are your feelings on current outdoor track season?
I feel it went well. I progressed during the season so it's always good. My times aren't exactly where I want them to be, but the fact that I'm getting better and I have a meet left, I just hope to progress even more. So overall the season went well and I'm still growing. I hope junior year is my breakout season.




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