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Cox Tabbed USATF Athlete of the Week

January 20, 2009
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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USATF Athlete of the Week Josh Cox is pictured at left winning the 2007 U.S. Air Force Marathon in Dayton, Ohio. The other two photos were taken during his time at Liberty.

USATF Athlete of the Week Josh Cox is pictured at left winning the 2007 U.S. Air Force Marathon in Dayton, Ohio. The other two photos were taken during his time at Liberty.

Former Liberty track & field standout Josh Cox, the new American 50K record holder, has been honored as USA Track & Field's (USATF) Athlete of the Week. Cox clocked a 2:47:17 for the 50K (approximately 31 miles) distance, in conjunction with P.F. Chang's Rock ‘n' Roll Arizona Marathon, Sunday morning in Phoenix, Ariz.

Cox, who graduated from Liberty in 1998, finished ninth in the marathon with a time of 2:20:29. He then concluded the remainder of the 50K at the nearby Sun Angel Stadium track, on Arizona State's campus. Cox's last lap was clocked in 71 seconds, enabling him to trim 4:31 off of Alex Tilson's American record, established in 2002.

Cox, a three-time participant in the marathon at the U.S. Olympic Trials, enjoyed success in both track & field and cross country during his time as a Liberty Flame. He was a four-time Big South champion, capturing back-to-back conference cross country crowns in 1995 and 1996. Cox was also the Big South outdoor titlist at 1,500 meters in 1997 and took the indoor 5,000-meter conference championship the following year.

Cox, now living and training in Mammoth Lakes, Calif., is the first current or former Liberty student-athlete to be named USATF Athlete of the Week since Nov. 28, 2007. That day, Josh McDougal, now a graduate assistant on Liberty's track & field/cross country coaching staff, earned the award after capturing the 2007 NCAA Division I National Cross Country Championship.

Now in its eighth year, USATF's Athlete of the Week program is designed to recognize outstanding performers at all levels of the sport. USATF names a new honoree each week and features the athlete on the USATF website. Selections are based on top performances and results from the previous week.