Cross Country and Track & Field
Like many long-distance runners, Hal Higdon’s career blossomed when the 5’10”, 140-pounder decided he was too small to play football. From a five-minute plus miler in high school, he rapidly became Carleton’s finest distance man in history, winning the Midwest Conference mile and half-mile as a junior and the individual cross country crown and the mile as a senior. The team title copped by Higdon and the Carleton harriers in the fall of 1952 was not only the first for the team in 18 years, but the first of many to come since that time.
Higdon placed fifth in the Olympic trials in the 3,000-meter steeplechase in 1960 and fifth in the 1964 Boston Marathon, the first American runner to cross the finish line. In Toronto in 1975, he won the gold medal in the steeplechase in the World Masters Track and Field Championships in a time of 9:18.6. He has won National AAU titles as a Junior, Senior, and Master Runner.