ATHENS, OH – Will Tremble felt the first stir around mile five. He was on a long steady run with a tight pack of his teammates when it began. “At first I thought nothing of it,” Tremble told The RUNion in a phone conversation. “This type of thing just isn’t supposed to happen on a run.”
But what began as a stir quickly developed into a full erection. “At first I didn’t say anything…It all happened so fast. I was confused,” he continued. “I mean it went from limp to half-mast to full-out boner in something like a minute.” The silence then turned to recognition and then commotion.
Junior Heanly Adams described his first reaction in a personal interview at the University food court: “At first I didn’t believe it was real. [Pointing to salad bar] I thought he stuffed a pickle or a stick in his shorts…When I found out it was real, I suddenly felt as if ‘the pack was closing in’ as we normally say, but in a much different way.”
Most runners believe that getting an erection on a run is impossible. Nevertheless, stories circulate, rumors pulse, and contests, popularly called “the boner race”, are held nationwide to see who can achieve the mythical feat. It’s rumored, even, that one team held a pot of $200 dollars that would go to the first to produce a “persuasive boner.” When asked how he finally managed the feat, Tremble couldn’t give a definite answer. “I can’t say for sure. I wasn’t trying to get one or anything. I don’t even remember what I was thinking about at the time.”
But some of Tremble’s teamates are beginning to speculate on how he did it. Ray Haystacker, a redshirt freshman, suggested that Tremble flooded his thoughts with “sexy fantasies” to force himself into getting an erection. “Orgies even” Hackstacker goes on “…girls’ team, guys’ team, pin-ups, farm animals…candles and hot wax, lace pillows everywhere…That kid’s got a dirty mind.” Others on the team think it was “something else”, suggesting that Tremble got a lift from substances that are banned in the so-called “boner race.”
“Will wants so bad to be the first [to get a running boner],” Senior Kent Halloway wrote in an e-mail, adding, “He would do anything: raid his dad’s Viagra stash, chew hand-fulls of Spanish fly gulped down with ginseng tea…I even heard he was touring all the local truck stops looking for goatweed. He would just stuff his pockets with quarters, hop in his car, and come back with all sorts of brown bags that he would stash in his locker.” Epimedium, or “horny goatweed”, is a plant species that is believed to be a highly potent aphrodisiac, and carries with it legends of its mythical power to increase virility and sensitivity. Its use in the boner race has therefore been controversial at best.
The allegations of cheating have caused discord between Tremble and some members of the team. Runners from around the country have stepped in to take sides, flooding discussion boards online with heated debates on the issue. Meanwhile, Tremble denies the allegations, calling them “baseless and rooted in jealousy.”
“I would never take a lift,” he issued as a final plea, “I’m a simple, honest guy whose head just so happened to pop into famedom.”