Patrick Koon of Leon High School, one of the fastest Florida high school distance runners of all-time holding state records for both the 3200 meter and 5K distance, has verbally committed on Monday to run next for Stanford University when he begins his collegiate career next year.
Koon, a 2-time FHSAA 3A state cross country champion and 2-time FHSAA 3A state 3200 meter champion with personal bests and Florida #1 all-time performances of 8:44.95 for 3200 meters and 14:11 for 5K, made his announcement on Monday afternoon in an instagram post.
He will not be the first Florida great to head to Stanford as Bolles High School alumni Charles Hicks just finished up a stellar collegiate career for the Cardinals before turning pro this past year and signing with Nike.
Now with the college decision out of the way, Koon can turn his attention to the remainder of his high school senior year which a major goal of his will be returning to compete at the Foot Locker Nationals after qualifying as a sophomore in 2021 and finishing in 37th place then last year unable to even attempt qualifying after an injury suffered while training in the post-season kept him away from racing in the South Regional qualifier in Charlotte.
Last year, Koon broke the FHSAA state meet record with his 14:56 repeat victory in the 3A race and set the Apalachee Regional Park course record earlier in the season at the FSU Pre-State Invitational with a 14:50 win.
Video: Workout Wednesday visit with Patrick Koon and Leon XC team
Speaking of the FSU Pre-State Invitational, that will be Koon's next race this weekend in which he will be the favorite going against virtually all of Florida's top ranked cross country runners including his greatest challenger to another 3A state title this fall in Belen Jesuit senior Joshua Ruiz.
Ruiz won the Southern Showcase in Huntsville, Alabama with the fastest recorded 5K cross country time in Florida high school history at 14:38. Koon had won the 2022 Southern Showcase last fall with a 14:43 performance.
So far this season, Koon has skipped out on racing in any major invitationals against top competition going with more low key local races in controlled efforts for his racing schedule. Perhaps saving something in the tank for the championship and post-season. This Saturday at Apalachee Regional Park with Ruiz and others in the race, Koon will likely be pressed to break his own course and meet record of 14:50 from one year ago.
Can watch the FSU Pre-State Invitational live exclusively on MileSplit.com here.