For how much noise Brannon Kidder has managed to make in the early goings of his first collegiate track season, the true freshman seems relatively soft-spoken off the track.
Or perhaps more aptly, he prefers to let his feet do the talking.
Kidder, a Lancaster, Ohio, native, extended the streak of at least one competitor running a sub-four minute mile at the Penn State National to seven years on Saturday afternoon. Kidder set a new personal best by running the mile in 3:59.48 at the meet. According to Kidder, this bested his previous fastest mile, which he ran in 4:03.12.
Kidder seemed surprisingly modest about the whole situation.
“I wouldn’t say I was confident [about running a sub-four minute mile],” Kidder said. “I was hoping to.”
Kidder’s roommate and teammate, Za’Von Watkins, expressed a different sentiment in regards to his friend’s accomplishments.
“I wasn’t surprised. I knew he was really talented coming in,” Watkins said. “He has a lot of goals set ahead of him, he’s been running well, training hard, so it wasn’t really a shock for me. I was just waiting for the time for him to do it.”
Kidder seemed to be happy about accomplishing the feat, but to say he was thrilled might be a bit of a stretch.
“It means a lot,” Kidder said. “This was a goal of mine, so I’m happy that I got it.”
Penn State coach Beth Alford-Sullivan spoke of what Kidder’s accomplishment meant as it pertains to her program as a whole.
“A streak going every single year puts a lot of emphasis on the competition, brings in a lot of talent for the competition, and always makes it exciting for the crowd,” Alford-Sullivan said.
Alford-Sullivan also talked about what she foresees for the talented freshman in the future. This might shed light on why Kidder doesn’t seem to be overwhelmed with the success he’s experienced thus far in his athletic career.
Alford-Sullivan repeatedly mentioned the potential Kidder has to entrench his name into Penn State’s storied athletic history, and even talked of the potential the youngster might have after graduation.
“I’m sure he has a future of being a Big Ten Champion, an NCAA All-American, and beyond that maybe even going on post-collegiate and running to a great level as well,” Alford-Sullivan said.
For now though, Kidder has his sights set solely on what he can accomplish this season.
“I guess just keep going faster,” Kidder said. “I wanna qualify for Nationals. I’m not sure what event yet, but that’s the goal.”