A TRUE HALL OF FAME STORY
(Koll) Uhl went from the halls of Fort Dodge Senior High to the NCAA?record books and Olympics
AMES — Lisa (Koll) Uhl spent the first part of her life running as fast and far as she could.
Now, the Fort Dodge native and former Olympian is looking forward to doing much of the same — just at a much different speed.
Uhl will be one of five new inductees into the Iowa State Athletics Hall of Fame for 2020, joining Janet Anson, Kaylee Manns, Ward Meythaler and Jake Varner during a special ceremony on Oct. 17 at the Iowa State-Oklahoma football game.
Along with her husband and fellow former Cyclone, Kiel Uhl, the couple recently welcomed their first child, Graham, into the world. Uhl is currently pursuing her specialty training as a resident in veterinary ophthalmology at Colorado State University. She graduated from veterinary school in 2018.
“I am no longer formally competing, but I still get out there and run for my own enjoyment,” she said. “I am hopeful that our little family will end up back in Iowa after my residency is complete, but we will see where life takes us.”
After a strong career as a Dodger in cross country and track, Uhl took it to whole new level with Iowa State. From 2007-10, Uhl was a four-time national champion, claimed 11 All-American honors and was named the Big 12 Female Athlete of the Year.
“When I first enrolled at ISU I was just hoping to make the travel squad!” Uhl admitted. “I never saw myself having such a serious running career; I just focused on getting better every day and doing all I could to make myself the best runner I could be. I think that allowed me to succeed by not limiting myself in either direction.
“I never expected too much of myself, but also never settled.”
Twice, Iowa State tabbed her the female athlete of the year for the school, and she added USTFCCA National Female Track Athlete of the Year to her resume in 2010. Uhl was a three-time first team CoSIDA Academic All-American and named the outstanding performer at the Big 12 Outdoor Championships twice and indoor meet once.
Uhl also set the collegiate record in the 10,000-meter run at 31:18.07 in 2010. That mark still stands as the top NCAA time for the event.
After battling with injuries that forced her to miss much of 2011, Uhl returned in 2012 and qualified for the Summer Olympics in London. She placed 13th in the 10,000 with a time of 31:12.80, the sixth-fastest time for an American female in the event.
“This induction means so much to me,” Uhl said. “This decision is made by former Iowa State athletes themselves, so to be honored within that group of my peers is truly humbling. Iowa State holds such a special place in my heart and to be honored by the university and athletic department is an achievement I hold in the highest esteem.
“The people. My husband, family, teammates, coaches, athletic trainers, athletics staff – really just all the people that helped me day in and day out to do my best to achieve my goals and dreams. I remember all the laughs on the easy runs, the pain of the hard workouts, the joys of the successes and the tears of the failures. All of these memories are filled with the faces of extraordinary humans that had such an impact on me and I am so grateful for them.”