Tom Haug: a determined man

Before qualifying for the national track and field tournament, sophomore high jumper, Tom Haug was attending high school and living in Manhattan. There, he enjoyed life in the close-knit Manhattan community. 

“The high school is a large high school, but it has a small town feel to it. Everyone knows each other. For athletics, everyone is really close and really supportive of one another. That is why I enjoyed football and track there,” Haug said.

In Manhattan, Haug lived with his brothers and his parents. One of Haug’s favorite parts of living in Manhattan was having his brothers there to mess with.

“I lived right outside Manhattan with my three brothers and my parents. I have a twin brother. He hasn’t really done anything to make me mad at him, we argue a lot, but we are brothers, so I don’t get too annoyed by him,” Haug said. 

Outside of jumping, Haug is talented in other ways. One of his hobbies involves playing the guitar.

“I like to watch a lot of tv and read. I also like to play music. I have picked up the guitar and the piano a little bit just to mess around with to find something outside track to kind of balance out athletics,” said Haug.

If he gets the chance, Haug wants to be able to see what the world has to offer him. That means traveling and trying different sports.

“I would love to travel some. I haven’t been out of the country before, so I am looking to do that. I would like to explore different athletic activities that I can challenge myself with,” said Haug.

Even though he just qualified for nationals, Haug believes that qualifying for nationals is his greatest achievement.

“One of my biggest achievements would probably be making the national tournament this year. That is something that I have been shooting for and working towards and one of my goals this year,” Haug said.

To get to where Haug is at, you have to have the natural talent, but you also need to have the willpower to be able to compete at that level.

“You kind of have to develop your mental attitude and your direction for the season and what you want to do. You need to develop the mental side before the season begins when you start training. You need to have in mind what you want to do for the season and keep that in mind when you go in and train every day and love the process,” Haug said.

As for head track and field coach, Cameron Babb, he is a huge fan of the way Haug comes in to work and get better in practice.

“My favorite thing about Tom is his attention to getting better.  I remember a time last year when I walked into Lee Arena with all the lights out, and found Tom practicing high jump by himself in the dark.  He didn’t care or make excuses to avoid training, he just wanted to get the work in no matter what,” Babb said.