Thirty years ago Stacey Whitt made Alvord and Texas history when he crossed the finish line in 9:41.9 to capture the state title in the 3200-meter run.
It was a record that held til 1987.
The event had been introduced only two years prior, but Whitt took to it immediately with the help of his coach Mack Thweatt.
“His consistency was always there,” Whitt said. “He was a quiet motivator and very calming.”
Whitt ran the mile his freshman season and felt he could catch a few more guys if he had a few more laps. His wish came true when the UIL announced the start of the two-mile race in 1981.
He qualified for the state meet the next three years for the Bulldogs, winning silver as a junior before capturing the title his senior season.
After a successful high school career, Whitt went on to Texas A&I where he ran for four years. He was All-Lone Star Conference his senior year.
Whitt only runs for cardio these days after last running competitively at the Houston Marathon in 2004.
“It was a bucket list thing,” Whitt said. “I wish I would have done it in college when I was in shape.”
He now resides in Kingwood with his wife, Tammy, and their three kids, Seth, Aubrey and Spencer.
Whitt says he never could have had the running career he did without the guidance of his high school coach.
“He was always encouraging and found some new techniques back in the day when there wasn’t a lot of information out there about running,” Whitt said. “At big meets he would always come up and put his hands on my shoulders and tell me to run smart and have fun.”
Thweatt retired in May after 43 years as an educator.
“It’s never to late to say thanks, and I hope he has a great retirement,” Whitt said. “I thank him for the impact he had on me and all the other athletes he coached along the way.”