By Savannah Pullin
With graduation quickly approaching, seniors have begun to reflect on their times at Baylor and the mark they have left on this community.
As the Baylor track and field members begin this reflection process, the impact of senior Whitney Prevost cannot be overlooked.
Prevost will be graduating in two weeks with a degree in education and a minor in criminal justice, with hopes of pursuing a career with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
As Prevost, a two-time All-American and 2012 Big 12 Champion, moves on to pursue a future in the FBI and tries to fulfill his Olympic athlete dreams, he said he has already made one of his dreams come true with his time spent at Baylor.
“Coming here was just always a dream to me,” Prevost said. “My family is a really big track family, so they like track. I like track. I just always wanted to come to Baylor since I was little, and hopefully start a legacy or leave a mark here.”
Prevost, who runs the 100 and 200-meter dashes along with being a member of the men’s winning 4×100-meter relay team, hopes to record new personal records, make it to the Olympic trials, and eventually to the Olympics in the 200-meter event.
“My dad always said I was a quarter guy and a 200 guy, so I mean, I’m not too big on the 100, but I’m good at the 100, so I do it,” Prevost said. “My best event is the 200.”
Coming in to Baylor, Prevost was one of the top high school athletes in the nation. Unfortunately, his career took a traumatic turn during his freshman year when he tore his hamstring.
“It was devastating,” Prevost said. “I knew I wasn’t going to be as fast the next couple of years as I was my freshman year.”
Prevost said he hasn’t been the same since he tore his hamstring, but he never wavered from his determination to run a steady race again. He said he knew God had a plan for him through the whole situation.
“I had to be mentally tough and get better as much as I could every day, and then one day, hopefully, I will back to where I used to be and it’s starting to get that way,” Prevost said.
His faith in the Lord and passion for track not only helped him get through his injury, but are also some of his best traits, according to head coach Todd Harbour.
“He’s a godly young man, he loves the Lord, and he’s just passionate about running,” Harbour said. “He loves track and field. He always comes with a smile on his face and a good attitude everyday.”
As Prevost maintained his character through the hardest years of his track career, his teammates looked on and took notes.
“I’ve learned a lot from Prevost, like stay poised and stay relaxed,” 4×100-meter relay teammate junior Everett Walker said. “Working with him has been a blessing.”
Walker said he’s always seen a strong work ethic in Prevost even though he’s only run with him for one outdoor season. Prevost works hard, he said, and never wavers in his determination.
Harbour shares this same opinion of the outstanding work ethic and character Prevost exemplifies at practice.
“You can’t say enough,” Harbour said. “He’s a high character person, and he’s just an outstanding individual.”
As the team prepares to lose an athlete as outstanding as Prevost, Harbour and the rest of the team will see a piece of him out on the track with them next year in Walker.
“I’ve been able to help Everett (Walker) out,” Prevost said. “He’s gotten significantly better. He’s more patient, he’s starting to get more focused, and I really think I’ve made a big impact on him. After I leave he’s going to be here representing Baylor, so that’s a good sign.”
Prevost has definitely given his fair share of lessons in his past five years at Baylor, but he says the biggest thing he has learned is the important of being patient, putting God first, and doing his best to stay healthy.
“You can be as fast you want to, but if you’re not healthy and you can’t compete, it makes no difference,” Prevost said.
As he regains his health and gets ready to take his running career to the next level, Prevost keeps in the mind a lesson he has learned.
“God has a plan,” Prevost said. “Just work with what He gives you and make the most of it, and when the time comes, take advantage of it.”