Trevor Jones | Posted: 29 Jun 2023 | Updated: 17 Jul 2023

Witsken, Rooks, Clinger garner CSC Academic All-America® honors

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Academic All-America Honors

AUSTIN, Texas — BYU men’s track and field collected three postseason awards as Caleb Witsken, Kenneth Rooks and Casey Clinger received NCAA Division I Men’s Track and Field/Cross Country 2022-23 Academic All-America® honors, the College Sports Communicators (CSC) announced Thursday.

The annual honor roll, selected by the CSC, celebrates the nation’s best in student-athlete achievement on the track and in the classroom.

BYU’s three athletes marks the first time in program history that more than one Cougar has earned the honors in a single season. Each BYU recipient earned the distinction for the first time in their respective careers.

Witsken becomes just the fifth Cougar to earn First Team Academic All-America honors after a season that saw him place sixth overall at both indoor and outdoor NCAA Championships. Witsken moved up the record books this year, tying Robison Pratt for No. 2 all-time in outdoor program history with a clearance of 5.60m/18-4.5 while improving upon his No. 3 all-time mark in indoor program history (5.66m/18-6.75).

The exercise science major concludes his BYU career with a 3.99 cumulative GPA.

Kenneth Rooks garnered Second Team honors, with a cumulative GPA of 3.96 for the civil engineering major. Rooks captured the steeplechase national title with a time of 8:26.17, punctuating the BYU men’s 10th-place finish at the 2023 NCAA Outdoor Championships in Austin, Texas. Rooks became the fourth BYU steeplechaser to win an individual championship and first BYU men’s athlete to claim an individual track and field title since Clayton Young in 2019.

During indoor season, Rooks was part of the DMR squad’s eighth-place, 9:39.45 finish at NCAA Indoor Nationals in Albuquerque, New Mexico March 10-11.

On May 6, Rooks became the then-fastest American collegiate athlete to run the steeplechase at 8:17.62. The run earned Rooks a spot on the Bowerman Watch List and later a place among 10 Bowerman semifinalists.

Casey Clinger collected Third Team Academic All-America honors with a cumulative GPA of 3.84. A business management major, Clinger competed in cross country, indoor and outdoor track and field. Clinger achieved a fourth career All-American honors in cross country with a seventh-place finish in the 10,000-meters (28:58.4) at the Division I NCAA Championships on Nov. 19 in Stillwater, Oklahoma.

Clinger seized three First Team All-American finishes in addition to a Second Team award across both indoor and outdoor seasons. Clinger ran 13:38.12 to finish as the runner-up in the 5,000-meters at indoor nationals. The senior with one remaining year of eligibility also recorded a podium finish in the outdoor 10,000m, crossing the tape at 28:13.63 for bronze in Austin earlier this month. He also placed fourth in the indoor 3,000-meters (7:49.37) and 11th in the outdoor 5,000m (14:12.54).

Clinger further cemented his place in Cougar history this year, becoming the school record-holder in three indoor events: the 3,000m (7:43.96), 5,000m (13:17.36) and as a member of the distance medley relay squad (9:21.18).

Click here for the full list of honorees.

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