411OnTheForty: Get to Know Sam Worley

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Texas distance specialist Sam Worley credits his workouts with the UT swimming and diving team with improving his stamina (photo from Jose Mendez / Horns Illustrated)

Distance runner Sam Worley burst on to the scene as a freshman for the Texas men's cross country team and has continued to perform at a high level.

After suffering a tibial fracture in February, Worley is working to recover and return faster than ever for his senior season next year. He does have two seasons of track left, after the NCAA gave an extra year of eligibility to all spring sport athletes after the NCAA Championships this spring were cancelled due to Covid-19.

3 Facts:

  1. Worley puts the team first as he showed in the John Thomas Terrier Classic in Boston, Massachusetts, during the 2020 indoor season, helping freshman teammate Crayton Carrozza break the four-minute mile mark, a personal best for Carrozza.
  2. He cross-trains by swimming with the Texas swimming team a couple days each week, and partially credits his improvement in stamina and endurance to his workouts in the pool. “For sure, swimming has helped. It’s great aerobics work and it’s nice to have that supplement,” Worley said.
  3. He turned down offers from Pac-12 powerhouse Stanford and Big 12 rival Oklahoma State to stay in-state and compete for the Horns.

2 Accomplishments:

  1. Coming out of high school, not only was Worley ranked No. 1 in the country in the mile by multiple experts, he also ran a personal-best time of 4:00.61, which at the time, was good enough for 12th all-time in U.S. history.
  2. Heading into this fall, Worley is a six-time USTFCCCA All-America, and a four-time Big 12 champion. Last fall, he became UT's first cross country All-America since the 2013 season.

1 Quote:

On winning the Big 12 title in the 1,500 meters for the second year in a row in 2019:

"It was a great feeling. When you go to a conference meet there is a lot of pressure to put on for the team and help the team win, so to be able to set up and score 10 points for the team was a great feeling."

Riley Zayas

Riley Zayas is a high school sophomore and freelance journalist from Round Rock, Texas. He began his journalism career as a Sports Illustrated Kids reporter and has since become a regular contributor to Horns Illustrated, covering Texas Longhorn sports. His work also includes Fellowship of Christian Athletes publications, College Baseball Nation and Sports Spectrum, a national christian sports website. He currently serves as the Managing Editor of True To The Cru, covering UMHB athletics. Twitter: @ZayasRiley

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