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Thread: NXN vs Footlocker

  1. #1
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    NXN vs Footlocker

    Nike Team Nationals (NTN) was created in 2004 to determine the national team champion in cross country. In 2008, Nike changed the name of the event to NXN so that they could poach top individuals from the Footlocker National meet. The result of this move by Nike leaves runners like Brie Oakley, Casey Clinger as well as top California runners missing an opportunity to compete for a Footlocker title.

    Since Nike and Footlocker appear unable to work together, I have a possible solution. Right now you have 40 runners at the Footlocker final. Footlocker should allow any runners that finish in the top 10 at NXN an opportunity to compete at their meet. This way, Brie Oakley (NXN champion) could have raced Claudia Lane at Footlocker and we could have a true national champion. I know many would have also liked to see Casey Clinger race at Footlocker.

    Some of you may be more familiar with this whole process and may have a better solution. Feel free to comment below.
    Last edited by Albert Caruana; 12-12-2016 at 01:00 PM.
    Albert Caruana
    Crystal Springs Uplands School

  2. #2
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    Footlocker used allow runners from the west region who ran at NTN the opportunity to run at Footlocker Finals if they finished in certain positions. I am unable to recall the exact scenario but I do know that some of the WEST runners did advance from NTN to Footlocker Finals. However, when Nike decided to also host individuals, in direct competition with the Footlocker National Finals, this opportunity was eliminated. The corporate entities are in direct competition with eachother for the best national talent and makes it difficult to see how they would work out such a deal when Footlocker got the shaft from Nike adding individuals.

    It really only affects the WEST region as the other regional qualifying meets for are not in direct competition. The West Footlocker regional is a week later than the others since the CA state meet is held Thanksgiving weekend. This requires the West runners choose if they are selected for NXN. Other regions do not have this necessary choice but many runners prefer to not have to race to "National Championship" races on consecutive weekends. I have no connection to either, have no insider knowledge (many would say no knowledge at all!) and have never had an athlete that I coach go to either. That being said, from what I hear, the Nike experience is above anything at all. The prestige of the Footlocker National Championship is still very impressive but seems to be dwindling with all the resources Nike has put into making NXN THE national meet. It is hard to see a scenario where Nike yields anything to Footlocker. Footlocker would have to allow the NXN races be de facto qualifiers again. I am sure Rich has a lot more information and insight but since he is part of the NXN team it is unlikely that he is allowed to share anything.
    Keith Chann
    Chemistry teacher
    XC Fan
    Rubidoux High School

  3. #3
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    I remember that as well and it may have been done for one season only. It's time to revisit that for Footlocker so that they can get true national champions.
    Albert Caruana
    Crystal Springs Uplands School

  4. #4
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    Why should Footlocker allow NXN to be their qualifier? Nike forced athletes to choose.

    As a fan I would love to see all of the best compete, like it was before NXN.

    I love the idea of a team national championship but having both team and individual championships is problematic as long as Footlocker still exists.
    Keith Chann
    Chemistry teacher
    XC Fan
    Rubidoux High School

  5. #5
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    The first year of NTN, the top three from each region were able to compete at Footlocker as well. If memory serves me (I'm getting old), 7 would qualify from the footlocker regional with the last 3 coming from NTN. I thought this was a great compromise and was very beneficial to both meets.

    Rich G would have more details but my understanding was that it came down to money... I believe both parties had a part in it but the end result was NXN.

    It's too bad that they can't agree! In my opinion, (I have been fortunate to be at both NXN and NTN), NTN was a much better meet. I believe the individuals screw up the team aspect of a national championship. I also believe that as you mentioned, it keeps Footlocker from truly crowning the national champion (no disrespect to this or any of the past year champions) .

  6. #6
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    NxN History

    Quote Originally Posted by Tony DiMarco View Post
    The first year of NTN, the top three from each region were able to compete at Footlocker as well. If memory serves me (I'm getting old), 7 would qualify from the footlocker regional with the last 3 coming from NTN. I thought this was a great compromise and was very beneficial to both meets.

    Rich G would have more details but my understanding was that it came down to money... I believe both parties had a part in it but the end result was NXN.

    It's too bad that they can't agree! In my opinion, (I have been fortunate to be at both NXN and NTN), NTN was a much better meet. I believe the individuals screw up the team aspect of a national championship. I also believe that as you mentioned, it keeps Footlocker from truly crowning the national champion (no disrespect to this or any of the past year champions) .
    Footlocker used to take 8 from each of the 4 sections so that the finals would have 32 runners. In 2004 Footlocker West took the Top 8 (while the other sections took the top 10) for Footlocker Nationals. Footlocker also took the Top 2 west finishers from NTN to also qualify for Footlocker Nationals (now have 40 athletes in the finals). I believe this continued thru the 2007 year (the last year of NTN). Then in 2008 when NXN formed, Footlocker quit allowing the Top 2 Nike West finishers from going to Footlocker Natl's but Footlocker continued to take the Top 10 from each section instead of going back to the Top 8.

    hank

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