MACEDONIA — The feeling of family drove Dominick Stockle to Miami University.
The way coach Tom Chorny has turned around the RedHawks’ men’s track and field program locked in his commitment.
As a result, the Nordonia senior picked the university in Oxford, Ohio, over the likes of Akron, Tiffin, Mount Union and a few schools out of state.
Stockle is headed to Miami as a long jumper, but will also run sprints.
"It was the people," he said. "The campus was beautiful. The coaches are nice. I like the guys. They all have great personalities. I want that relationship.
"At Nordonia, everybody that I ran with was as fast as me or faster at one point. I’ve always competed with them, but as we did that, we got better. That’s why we’re where we are today. We kept pushing each other. Having those people to train with is going to make me better. I’m not going to get better by myself."
The top priority is jumps for Miami. Stockle comes into a program on the rise.
When Chorny took over the track program in 2016, the men’s team finished last at the Mid-American Conference outdoor championships in seven of the previous eight seasons.
The next three seasons, the RedHawks finished fifth and were third in the MAC last season, the best showing by the men’s team since 1994.
"Honestly, it’s great," Stockle said. "They’re improving in every aspect of track instead of focusing on distance or sprints. I’m glad distance, sprints and jumps are boosting up."
Miami will get a gigantic shot in the arm when Stockle arrives.
He joined Brenden Jackson, Zack Liederbach and Marvahun Johnson this winter as part of the winning 4x200-yard relay at the indoor state championships.
Stockle also finished second in long jump and was 11th in the 200.
He was a district champion in the 4x200 and runner-up in long jump last season in outdoor. He also broke the school record in long jump (23 feet, 5½ inches) previously held by Browns cornerback Denzel Ward.
Stockle will take those performances as well as a winning attitude to Oxford where he hopes to earn a starting spot immediately.
"I’m just going to have to work hard," Stockle said. "If there’s somebody that’s really better than me, I’m going to have to do squats every morning and change up my mindset. Competition is honestly everything in track."
Stockle is leaning toward a major in computer science and can’t wait to show Chorny and the rest of his teammates why Miami’s choice to grab him up was a good one.
"I can be a leader at the times when it’s needed," Stockle said. "Even if I’m not as fast as somebody, I will train harder than them. They’ll see that and they’ll start training harder because they know I’m coming after them. I’m going to be a leader who sits there and focuses on what needs to be done because my priorities are set."