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THE WINNER: Stuart McNutt
School: Blue Valley West (Overland Park, Kan.)
Weight: 130 pounds
Athletic achievement: He raced to a second consecutive individual state championship with a time of 15:24.50 this past season, leading the Jaguars to second place in Class 5A. The state’s returning Gatorade Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year, McNutt took fourth at both the Nike Cross Nationals Heartland Regional championships, in 15:14.70, and at the Foot Locker Midwest Regional championships, clocking a 15:10. Also the two-time Kansas City Star All-Metro Runner of the Year, McNutt earned All-American honors with a 10th-place finish at the NXN Final in 15:35, and then crossed the line in 21st at the national Foot Locker Cross Country Championships with a time of 15:51. He also won a second straight Cross Country Coaches National Youth Championships’ 17-18 division title in November, clocking a 15:17.68.
Academic excellence: McNutt has maintained a 3.74 weighted GPA.
Exemplary character: In addition to donating his time as a youth running instructor and as a peer tutor, he has volunteered on behalf of his church, the United Way and the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life.
“Over the past two years, he has been dominant—maybe the best male runner (in the state) over the past decade,” said Rich Wilson, head coach of rival Blue Valley Southwest High. “He’s a really great kid who has worked to earn everything he has achieved.”
THE FUTURE: McNutt has signed with Tulsa.