Harris and Nebert are Named First Team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District VIII

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Willamette University distance runners Travis Harris (Sr., Bellingham, WA/Sehome HS) and Lucas Nebert (Jr., Cincinnati, OH/Wyoming HS) have been named First Team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District VIII as part of the 2006-07 College Division Men’s Track and Field and Cross Country Team. The Academic All-District team, which honored a total of 10 players, was selected by members of the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).

Willamette and the University of Calfornia at San Diego are the only teams with two athletes on the All-District squad. First Team All-District selections are eligible for the ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America Team, which will be announced on June 25.

Harris, who achieved a 3.99 grade point average with a major in Chemistry, competed in cross country. Nebert, who owns a 3.80 GPA and is majoring in Biology and Chemistry, participated in cross country and track and field.

Both athletes helped the Bearcats win their fifth consecutive Northwest Conference championship and their fifth consecutive NCAA Division III West Region title during the cross country season. Nebert and Harris also earned Second Team All-NWC honors in cross country, as Nebert took 13th place (24:15.56) and Harris was 14th (25:15.99) at the NWC Meet. The pair added All-West Region honors, with Harris taking 10th place (25:36.0) and Nebert finishing 15th (25:53.41) at the West Region Meet.

The cross country season concluded with Willamette finishing 27th at the NCAA National Championships at the Voice of America Park in West Chester, Ohio, on Nov. 18, 2006. Harris placed 136th in the field of 279 runners. Nebert crossed the finish line in 163rd place.

Harris ended his Willamette career with four Top 10 finishes at the NWC cross country championships and four Top 15 finishes in the West Region. As a freshman in 2003, he took eighth place in the NWC and was 12th in the Region. In 2004, he finished fourth in the NWC and 12th in the Region. During the 2005 season, he placed seventh in the NWC and eighth in the Region.

Nebert also was a successful member of the track and field team this spring, as he took second place at the NWC Championships in the 3,000-meter steeplechase with a time of 9:32.65. His performance in the steeplechase helped the Bearcats finish second in the NWC team standings.

During his first two seasons with the Bearcats, Nebert contributed to the Willamette track and field team winning NWC championships in 2005 and 2006. The back-to-back titles gave the Bearcats five consecutive championships, before the string was ended this spring. Individually, Nebert placed sixth in the 1,500-meter run at the NWC Meet in 2005. In 2006, he was fourth in the 3,000-meter steeplechase and ninth in the 1,500-meter run at the NWC Meet.

CoSIDA District VIII includes colleges and universities in Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington and British Columbia. Athletes nominated for the CoSIDA Academic All-District Team were starters or key reserves with cumulative grade point averages of 3.2 or higher (4.0 scale). Each player was at his current college or university for at least one academic year.

The College Division includes players in NCAA Division II, NCAA Division III and the NAIA. The Bearcats compete in NCAA Division III and the Northwest Conference.

2006-07 ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District VIII College Division Men's Track and Field and Cross Country Team - Complete List