(PUEBLO, Colo.) — Nate Miller couldn’t pass up the possibility of competing in the NCAA DII Outdoor Track and Field Championships knowing where it would be in 2023.

The Widefield graduate decided to take advantage of the additional year of competition due to COVID-19, which set him up to compete for a national title at CSU Pueblo — a school he’s called home the last six years.

“I thought I would just maybe be a conference champion a couple times and call that good,” Miller said. “I just really went to work and tried to mold myself to be the best shot putter that I could be.”

“You have to give the majority of the credit to Nathan for just working his tail off in between there and coming back way better,” CSU Pueblo Track & Field and Cross Country Head Coach Matt Morris said. “He didn’t sit around waiting for the world to happen. He just kept on working.”

The four-time All-American’s best throw of 18.58 meters helped solidify his opportunity to go after his first individual championship Saturday when CSU Pueblo hosts the best track & field athletes at the DII level.

Miller isn’t the only Thunderwolves thrower to be competing Saturday, either. Justin Jenks’ throw of 18.88 meters earlier this year was the third-best among national finalists.

“(Throws) coach (Adam) Lufkin played a huge part of that this year as well,” Morris said. “Nate’s had three coaches in the last four years and to be able to kind of seamlessly dovetail those pieces together and keep the continuity going is really difficult.”

Being the best shotputter in the nation would be nice, but would it be enough to get the approval of a sibling?

“More than anything, my sister is the one person that kind of wants to keep me humble,” Miller said. “Four-time All-American? Not impressed. Not a national champion yet.”

Pride, and now familial respect, are on the line this Saturday.