Grizzly Cubs junior wants to peak later

There’s at least one person who isn’t impressed by the cross-country season the No. 1 runner for Franklin Community’s boys team is having.

That, of course, would be Josh Campbell himself.

“It hasn’t been anything spectacular, in my opinion,” said Campbell, a junior who placed second at the recent Johnson County Meet. “It’s not the postseason, when it’s most important to run fast.”

Saturday morning, it will be.

The Grizzly Cubs again host their own sectional at a venue where Campbell placed eighth as a freshman in a time of 17:19.79. Last season, he proceeded to knock almost an entire minute off his time (16:19.81) to finish runner-up to Center Grove’s J.T. Hodges.

Hodges, a sophomore, is again expected to be at or near the front of the pack at sectional.

Campbell, too.

“It’s all about being able to run fastest in your last race of the season,” Campbell said. “You don’t want to peak at sectional, but still run well. For me, I want to run at the state meet, so I want to run my fastest race at semistate.”

Runners qualifying out of the Franklin Community Sectional advance to the Shelbyville Regional on Oct. 15.

This is a noticeable departure from Campbell’s first two varsity seasons. As a freshman and sophomore he advanced to the South Dearborn Regional and then the extremely difficult semistate hosted by Carmel.

Suffering from an ill-timed case of bronchitis, Campbell wasn’t able to practice either of the two days prior to semistate. He wound up finishing 96th overall in a time of 17:42.9.

Therein lies all the motivation he needs to perform well enough to be showcasing his talents at the state finals at Indiana State University later this month.

“Josh’s times aren’t really much better than they were last year, but we’re training him at a higher level,” Grizzly Cubs coach Adam Schwartz said. “The hope is that he’ll be at his strongest in a couple of weeks.”

The Campbell file

Name: Josh Campbell

Age: 16

Born: Greenwood

Family: Parents, Jeff and Janet; brothers, Jared, 30, and Jake, 27; sisters, Jessica, 23, and Jaclyn, 19

Favorite TV show: “SportsCenter”

Favorite food: Spaghetti

Favorite movie: “Remember the Titans”

Favorite athlete: Paul Pierce

Favorite team: Chicago Cubs

Mike Beas is a sports writer for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at