It’s pretty rare for a track coach to have just one All-American on his or her roster. Last year, juniors Sean Lewis and Eddie Morrow finished fourth and fifth respectively in the men’s 400-meter hurdles to give Coach Jerry Arvin not one, but two All-Americans in the same event.
This spring Lewis and Morrow both qualified for the NAIA Championships again in the 400 hurdles, and they are currently preparing for the Golden State Athletic Conference Championships on April 27-28. The Point Weekly caught up with the duo to talk about their friendship and competition on and off the track.
Point Weekly: How did you guys get to be such good friends?
Sean Lewis: I hated Eddie!
Eddie Morrow: Yeah, he did.
SL: Well, I didn’t hate him, but he came in as a recruit, and I thought, “Oh, homeboy’s gonna come steal my thunder!” (laughs)
EM: I tried to get to know this guy at first, but he pissed me off quite often. He always corrected me, and I don’t like being corrected (they both laugh). So at first, it was kind of an unspoken… I don’t know, I wouldn’t call it a rivalry. … We were just on two different ends. We weren’t friends basically. Spring semester  we started to become better friends.
SL: I think it was maybe doing the 4×4 [4x400-meter relay]. Well we did the same workouts, too.
EM: It was through workouts that we started to bond, but I’d say that we really became good friends over the summer. Over the summer, yeah?
SL: Yeah. Well because we were here for nationals week after school ended, and everyone just kind of hangs out. We got to know each other better there.
EM: And in the beginning of this year—not this semester but this year— we grew closer together.
SL: Eddie would be kicking it in the guard shack, and I’d come and hang out. We’d just talk for so long.
PW: How do you guys push each other during training?
EM: (laughs) It’s not spoken during training.
SL: It’s just a little competitive.
EM: He’ll kick it; I’ll kick it. I’ll kick, and then he kicks it while we’re running. And there’s no [one saying], “Let’s go hard on this.”
SL: It’s all to see if you can keep up.
EM: It’s keeping up, because with 100 meters left, we both kick it at the same time. And so we might not have the mindset of, “All right, let’s push each other, guys,” but we know we don’t want to get outkicked.
PW: So what’s it like racing against each other?
SL: Oh, that’s when we started getting tight. Last year at [the Golden State Athletic Conference Championships] we were in the same 400 hurdles race and the same 400.
EM: Last year at conference, I [started out] slow, and all of the sudden I’m running and Sean.
SL: And I come up, and I’m like, “Come on, Eddie, let’s go!” Just yelling—during the race (laughs).
EM: He’s all like, “Kick! Kick!” And I was like, “All right.” And I kicked in both races.
SL: We even did that at nationals, too. In the semifinal 400 hurdles race, we were coming in the last bit, and it was like, “Come on, let’s go! Come on! All out! All out! Let’s get in!”
EM: I’d never talked to anybody during a race, so that was pretty cool. We encourage each other while we’re racing. I love racing against Sean. Because not only is he good, but he’s a friend.
PW: What about the other person brings out the best in you?
EM: Sean’s need for understanding and doing things correctly probably brings out the best in me. The thing that I disliked him most for probably brings out the best in me. Because I’ll want to half-do something, and he doesn’t half-do stuff. He just does it and does it right. So I’d say that’s what brings out the best in me. And that’s in all facets, not just in competition, but in life. I might want to give up on talking to someone, but he’ll just say, “No, man, see how it goes. You’re going to grow from this.” He brings out the best for me just to push myself and do things the right way.
SL: Eddie’s good at making me understand why I think what I think or believe what I believe. He always tries to contradict whatever I say, so I always have to defend my argument or what it is that I have. He just has the words that I don’t really have. I’m pretty short-spoken on a lot of things. But he elaborates on it a lot more and gets me to remember and realize a lot of things that I normally don’t see.
PW: What other ways have you guys grown together off the track?
EM: We’ve probably grown more off the track than we have on it, I’d say.
EM: This semester we get to spend more time on the track, but last semester we got to spend more time off the track just talking about, well, everything: who we are, why we rationalize what we rationalize, what’s most important to us. You know what I mean? I’d say dialogue is the way that we’ve grown the most.
SL: Yeah, I’ve shared with Eddie so many different things that I’ve gone through over the years, and also how I’m just processing things currently. It’s just been good. It’s funny because I didn’t think he’d be one of my best friends when I came here… well, when he came here [Morrow transferred to PLNU in fall 2010]. I was like, “Who’s this guy? He’s just some hood rat from the slums of Bako,” (they both laugh).
PW: So as far as the rest of the season goes, what are your expectations and goals from this point forward?
EM: I’ve had this in my head since we finished nationals last year, that me and him were going to finish 1-2 [in the 400 hurdles at nationals]. Whatever way it goes, it goes, but that’s my plan. I want to go 1-2 no matter what. And I want to both [run under 51 seconds].
SL: Exactly. I have the same sort of mindset. I have the same thing. That’s how I want to finish.