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Northwest Bearcats

Brad Ortmeier

You'd be hard pressed to find a more talented Northwest Missouri State distance runner than Brad Ortmeier. Former cross country and track and field coach Rich Alsup spent more than 30 years alongside Bearcat runners and dubs Ortmeier ONE of the greatest if not THE greatest. Few would argue against him.

Ortmeier is a five-time All-American whose five program records have stood for more than 20 years. He represents half of Northwest's indoor All-Americans in distance events and of the seven outdoor All-America distance awards Northwest has garnered, four are owned by Ortmeier.

Ortmeier competed for Coach Alsup on Northwest's cross country team from 1982 through 1985. He was named Newcomer of the Year as a freshman after placing 14th at the MIAA championship meet, but was just getting started. He'd place third, sixth and second at the championship the following seasons.

An injury delayed the start of Ortmeier's track career by one year, but it only made him one year better. In 1985 he won the MIAA indoor two-mile championship and during the outdoor campaign turned in the first of three consecutive All-America performances in the 10,000-meter run. In a photo finish, he was named national runner-up with a program-record time of 29:34.06 in his final 10K performance in 1987 - a race Alsup describes as one of the most memorable 10K races ever contested at the Division II level. Alsup remembers the lead changing five times during the final 800 meters. The photo had Southeast Missouri State's Art Waddle winning by one one-hundredth of a second.

Ortmeier currently resides in Des Moines where he owns a successful health care staffing agency called CBS Staffing. He has a 10-year-old daughter, Kennedy. Ortmeier continues to do what he loves and recently completed his first triathlon.