PR: 27:31.56 (2010)
Current Residence: Portland, Ore.
High School: Liberty Christian (Redding, Calif.) HS ‘03
College: Wisconsin ‘07
Coach: Jerry Schumacher
Club: Oregon TC Elite
The highlight of Nelson’s 2010 campaign came at the USA Outdoor Championships where he battled all-time great Bernard Lagat to the wire in the 5,000 meters. Also in 2010, Nelson posted a personal best in the 10,000m of 27:31.56, which was the third best time by an American that year. Lagat barely pulled away at the end to win it in 13:54.08, with Nelson coming in at 13:54.80. Nelson enjoyed a breakthrough 2009 season highlighted by his second-place finish at the USA Cross Country Championships and qualifying for the 2009 World Outdoor Championships team with his third-place finish in the 10,000m at the USA Outdoor Championships in June. Nelson also found success at the 2009 Payton Jordan Invitational in early May, winning the 10,000m in a personal best time of 27:36.99, which was the second-fastest time by an American that year. In 2009, Nelson also posted a new personal best in the 5,000m when he stopped the clocks when he finished second in 13:24.87 at Heusden. While at the University of Wisconsin, Nelson was a 2007 Big Ten champion in the 5,000m and a 2005 Big Ten champ at 10,000m. He finished fifth in the 10,000m at the 2007 NCAA Championships. He was also a valued member of Badger NCAA Championship cross country and indoor track teams. He has joined fellow Wisconsin grads Matt Tegenkamp and Chris Solinsky in moving to Portland, Oregon, to continue working with their former college coach, Jerry Schumacher. Nelson was a prep star in California, where he won three state cross country championships.
2010: Runner-up at USA Outdoors 5,000m (13:54.80)...7th in Jordan (27:31.56)...ranked #3 in U.S. by T&FN...bests of 13:54.80 & 27:31.56.
2009: 3rd at USA Outdoors (28:01.34)...17th at World Outdoors (28:18.04)...1st at Payton Jordan Classic (27:36.99PR)...2nd at Heusden 5,000m (13:24.87PR)...runner-up at USA Cross Country Champs (36:06)...ranked #3 in U.S. by T&FN...bests of 27:36.99, 13:24.87
2008: 10th at Olympic Trials (28:29.95)...bests of 28:29.95, 13:34.93.
2007: 9th at USA Outdoors (28:55.85)...5th at NCAA Champs (29:00.75)...Big 10 5,000m champ...bests of 28:04.46, 13:42.18i.
2006: 6th at NCAA Champs (28:30.34)...3rd at Big 10 Champs...21st at USA Outdoors 5,000m (14:21.59)...bests of 28:49.98, 13:48.97.
2005: 8th at NCAA Champs (29:01.56)...19th at USA Outdoors (14:08.40)...bests of 28:45.32, 13:50.80i.