Letter to the Fans: Bryce Hoppel

After a brief period of determining how to move forward in my career, I have decided to forgo my senior year of collegiate eligibility and pursue my dream of running professionally. I would like to thank everyone who has helped me get to this point in my life. My ability and accomplishments would not have been possible if it were not for the people who surround me and show me an unimaginable amount of love and support.

They are what is truly great about me. To hear my story is to hear the story about the people who made who I am possible.

 

Kansas Jayhawks

KU
Choosing KU and developing here for the past three years has changed my life in ways that I had not even dreamed of. The question always goes, “If you had a chance to start over and fabricate your dream life, then what would you choose?” I can say without a doubt that I would choose to be a Jayhawk a million times over. I may have worn the Kansas jersey for the last time, but that doesn’t change the fact that I will forever be a Jayhawk.

 

Bryce Hoppel hugs assistant coach Mike Whittlesey after winning the NCAA Indoor title.

"I'm really grateful for the time and accomplishments that Bryce achieved as a member of the KU team. We are excited for the next step in his career and he has our total support in achieving his goals."

Stanley Redwine, Head Coach

Coaches and Staff
Coach Whitt (Michael Whittlesey) was a major reason why I was drawn so much to KU. His knowledge and passion for the sport has helped my own passion grow into something amazing. Not only has he helped me grow as an athlete, but so much as a young man. He is the master behind the scenes and an equal part of all the success I have seen. I want to thank him for taking me under his wing and investing so much of his time and effort (in me).

Coach (Stanley) Redwine was kind enough to welcome me into the Kansas track & field family and I could not be more thankful to have been a part of such a special group of people. He has been an incredible coach and has guided me in all aspects of my career. I thank him for always leading me and the program to new heights.

The entire coaching and support staff is nothing short of incredible. Almost every individual among the KU athletics staff has made an impact in my life that I will never forget. I thank them for going beyond the expectations of the job and creating an environment that together culminates greatness.

Going back to high school, Coaches (Tony) DeLaRosa, (Hill) Ochoa and (Jeff) Streun helped me get my start in track & field and if it was not for them I probably would not have found my way into the sport and for that I owe much thanks.

 

Bryce Hoppel connects with teammates after winning the NCAA Indoor title.

Teammates
Our team has closely resembled that of a family and has provided me with a variety of things, including lifelong friendships, inspiration and memories that will last a lifetime. If it was not for them I don’t know where my love for the sport would have even begun. The one thing that I can now say looking back is that my group of friends from the past and from the present has kindled the now-engulfing fire I have for track & field. There’s something about embarking on a journey with a group that makes each and every moment along the way a moment you could live in forever.

 

Kansas Jayhawks

Family and Friends
My family are the roots to my strong foundation as well as the never-ending rain that helps me to grow more and more.
My parents, Monty and Rita, raised me to reach for the stars all the while teaching me the lesson of embracing the clouds rather than trampling over them. The humbleness of my dad and the loving compassion of my mom have set standards that I can only hope to one day achieve. I am thankful to have them, but am even prouder to be their son.

My sisters, Kelsey and Megan, join me in a family I am so thankful to have been born into. If it was not for Kelsey’s athletic prowess to inspire me or Megan’s thoughtfulness to guide me, then I have no clue where I would be today.

The extended family of both the Hoppel’s and the Rodriguez’s together make me unworthy of the amount of love they are capable of giving. I can only hope that I can reciprocate even a fraction of the same love back to them and to everyone around me.

My hometown friends and all the friends I’ve made along the way are why I do it. They make running enjoyable and life as a whole something to cherish.

And, finally, I’d like to thank God for giving me everything that I am and the simple gift of the ability to run.

 

Kansas Jayhawks

Community
I could not have been blessed with a more special place to have grown up and become the person that I am than Midland. Every person who has reached out to me and been there to support me throughout these 21 years of my life are responsible for more than they may know. You push me to be the best representative that I can be and help me find ways in which I can better myself as a person. No matter where I go in life or where I travel, I will always be the kid from Midland, Texas and the Jayhawk from Lawrence, Kansas.