Many of the spectators at Oatlands were commenting on Solomon Haile's age. He obviously looked much more mature than the 17 and 18 year-olds he was racing. What kind of assurances to we have in the US that transfer or exchange students are really high school age? I am sure that many of the places these students come from have less accurate record-keeping than the US, where my son could not play Little League without a copy of his birth certificate in hand when registering. It certainly ruins a good high school race when our boys are pitted against a man who has the physical maturity of a 20+ year old.
- oh come on. just because he may look a little more mature doesnt mean that he is older than the other guys.
not to mentiion if we put him up against someone (oh lets say Andrew Colley) who is running very well right now, and he got beat you wouldn't even be mentioning this. You would be talking about how Colley (or any other runner) beat him.
- As a parent used to normal development, I am just commenting on what looks like an odd situation. Again, the main issue is how age is checked on a "student" like this. Who makes sure that all schools are following the rules?
- Take a look at the Plunkett gallery of pics from the race and try to tell me that this guy is not older.
- I have a friend from Sherwood HS and he's on the XC teem he told me that the coach knows hes older than what he says, but they just don't talk about it "it is what it is"
- I know a guy who knows someone who knows something.... okay. It seems like the definition of a rumor. if you don't know for a fact he's too old why get online and tarnish his victory with speculation? Look for facts one way or another and in the meantime congratulate him on his well-run race? not to metion the fact that these are adolescent guys who develop at way different speeds so there's no way to tell.
- For what it's worth, there was a guy at my HS (West Springfield in the late 90's) named Sharif Karie (4:02 HS miler) who everyone said the same thing about - but he was actually the correct age to run in HS.
Could just be that Ethiopian/Somolian's develope differently around that age?
- Not to prolong this unnecessarily, because ultimtely there is nothing we can do, but this reminds me of two situations: 1) the Chinese gymnasts at the Olympics, and 2) a couple of guys at Fork Union a few years ago that came here from Poland. These guys had the physical maturity of men, and did very well for a time. I don't know where they ended up.
- Axel Mostrag went to Tennessee and Szymon Rola went to Concorde or somewhere like that.
- Axel Mostrag went to Tennessee and Szymon Rola went to Concorde or somewhere like that.
- This story came out after he won the 5k at NON. The RUMOR is that he entered the country under a different name after racing professionally in Europe.
- This seems like it could be much like Fork Union grad Kippy Keino. Born in Kenya in '82 but graduated in 2003. Hmmmmmm...
- Digging up false rumors to prove your point is in poor taste.
Axel ran in Europe during the summer after school let out for the summer. He was never a "professional" in Europe as he only raced in the Jr. National events trying to make his country's world team. Much like some high school runners did this past summer here in the USA. He turned 19 the spring of his graduating year. Well within the age requirements of the VHSL. BTW, Axel was not the fastest runner his Sr. year. Was everyone else older than him? Why not question their age?
Kippy was accused many times of being "old", by people tring to discredit a good person. Yet no proof ever surfaced other than "I heard" or people making up his date of birth. Kippy turned 19 during Spring track. Kippy had also been beaten by a guy named Tatu, but no one ever accused him of being old...hmmm.
Derek Robbins was always accused of being too old. Yet, he was within the age requirements of the VHSL, but that never stopped people from discrediting is accomplishments.
I transferred from a poorly run "city" school to a county school that was more advanced. I was held back a year to catch up. This resulted in me turning 19 during spring track. Nothing abnormal. I say it is not abnormal, cause the VHSL rules account for this, if the rules allow for it to happen, it must happen often enough for them to make a rule for it.
Please refrain from making up information to slander an athlete or school. If you have proof, call the VHSL and file a complaint. If you want proof, call the schools AD. Making an allegation based off how they look or what someone hears 3 times removed is immature, irresponsible and not fair to the athlete who has done nothing wrong.
- And what is his real name is it Solomon Haile or Solomon Semunguse?
And since this is definitely his name, how was he 20 in 2007?
- I'm not getting the Kippy/Age thing from a referral. Look at his Villanova Bio and you'll see it for yourself.
- This is not bitterness or rumor mongering. What Solomon is doing, whether he is from Ethiopia or not, is simply wrong. Observe the proof on this SC Milesplit forum, then you try to tell me this isn't cheating. Look especially at the pictures provided in some of the links.
A little fair high school competition, anyone?
- Exactly. My original point was not to let rumors fly, (although if all this info is available then why has it not been inestigated by meet directors, schhols or Nike?) and I was not even aware of this ongoing controversy. It was to question meet directors and coaches about the porcedures in place to prevent cheating. If no set procedures are mandated: ie, legitimate birth certificates, and so on; many schools and meet directors will look the other way.
- I just looked at cavsrunner's link where "Haile" used his other name and is obviously the same man. You should all look at that and send it to all the news outlets you can think of to get this cheater off our courses. I feel sorry for the legitimate HS boys who want to win these races and the adults in charge who are doing nothing about it. He should be stripped of all his high school awards and deported.
- WOW....youre all high and mighty arent you lol. Deport the guy for running well within VHSL age requirments?......nice. I just cant stop laughing. Maybe the age requirements are different in MD but in VA the rules state that you can attend any high school until you are the age of 21....you may also compete (as long as you have eligibility left) until you reach that age as well.
And i know this because i called up my previous HS pricinpal and asked him to find the age rule in the VHSL rules book that our my school keeps on hand.
Im sure the rules in MD are similar.
- From the VHSL Handbook at
28-5-1 AGE RULE-The student shall not have reached the age of 19 on or before the first day of August of the school year in which he/she wishes to compete.
28-5-2 Interpretation: A student born on or before August 1, 1989, shall be ineligible for interscholastic competition in the school year 2008-09.
(1) In case of doubt as to age, the following evidence may be accepted as proof thereof:
Birth certificate from the State Bureau of Vital Statistics, affidavit of the physician attending at birth, and documentary evidence such as the family record of birth in the Bible,
official school record, and the affidavit of parent or guardian. Documentary proof of age other than a birth certificate will be accepted in cases of doubt only when the Bureau of Vital Statistics in the state of birth reports that no record exists.
(2) If there is a discrepancy in the age recorded on the Master Eligibility Lists filed in the League office by member schools, the earliest listed date of birth shall be considered
correct until proof otherwise has been submitted and accepted.
- Deported? Let's not go extreme, but you can't argue with the evidence. I'm sure if you brought Stutzman back in three years, he'd be able to beat himself by 19 seconds as well.
- i heard a rumor that soccer goalie is 22. im just saying
- Thanks for the clearly stated rules. Also, we have to ask ourselves 1) Why would a grown man want to change his age and run in HS races? The obvious answer is to get a free ride to an American school. That is cheating all of us. 2) Why is no one investigating this, even though it is a relatively easy thing to check? Because the HS and meets benefit from a fast runner. It is galling to see the news reports (Wash Post Sunday sports to name one) fawning on this guy who made it look "so easy" and no one reporter is going "Wait a minute...."
- I'm the person who posted all the info on the SC site. I also posted it on the national site, but got no responses. I can't believe that no one else is upset that this man is cheating high school kids out of national titles. It's obvious that he is the same guy that won prize money and came to the states looking for "management" not an education. In his third race in the US he is quoted as being disappointed that his expenses weren't covered. Maybe US road racing wasn't the gravy train he thought it would be so what do you do next? How about pretend to be a 17 year old to get a scholarship somewhere. Being a footlocker finalist I know a little about how hard it is to get a track scholly, they aren't exactly throwing them around to 22 year old africans.
I don't have a problem with racing against Africans, as long as they are honest about their ages. I didn't know Kippy, I did know Martin Kieno and his age was legit as was Jama Bile and Ibrahim Aden from Fork Union that I ran with on the South team for footlocker.