The inaugural event hosted 1,300 runners and walkers, and a total of 2,000 attendees.
Stephen Strasburg (left) signs a young fan's T-shirt during the event.
More than 1,300 runners and walkers followed a winding course throughout campus during the January 15 Stephen Strasburg 5K Walk and Fun Run With Tony Gwynn. With hundreds more gathering to support the participants, attendance for the inaugural event was closer to 2,000.
“It’s a great turnout,” said former SDSU pitcher Strasburg, who not only ran in the race, but who sponsored the event to raise money for the Aztec baseball program. “A lot of people were excited about it.”
As an official host for the event, Strasburg spent much of his time signing autographs and taking photos with fans, as did Aztec baseball head coach Tony Gwynn, who said he was favorably impressed by the crowd and the festive atmosphere.
“It’s awesome just having Stephen come back and put his name on this event,” Gwynn said, “and seeing the turnout, it’s unbelievable.”
Bringing attention to the program
“It’s something new and it’s going to bring a lot of attention to our program,” said Aztec pitcher Craig Rasmussen, a senior social science major from Chula Vista. He and his teammates autographed Aztec baseball posters and thanked participants for raising money for the program.
For the runners and walkers, the 5K course began just outside Tony Gwynn Stadium in front of the Aztec Aquaplex and concluded near the same location.
“There were a lot of hills, but it was fun,” said SDSU alumnus Mark Ranallo (’04), who said he enjoyed the run through familiar surroundings. “I would come back if they had it again next year.”
Grateful for support
It will be several days before organizers know how much money was raised for the Aztec baseball program, but Strasburg views the event as a success and is grateful for all the support from participants.
“This means so much to the program and to San Diego State athletics,” he said. “I look forward to doing it again next year.”
To view a slideshow of pictures from the event, visit the SDSU Alumni Association website.