The CHill Zone of T&F: Conway's View From the Finish Line

They’re Off & Running

Jan 15th, 2013
6:25 am PST

Galen RuppFor those fans of the sport that have been waiting for the action of track and field THIS was your weekend! Lots of meets with tons of action. Especially on the collegiate scene , where all the major players were in action including Florida, Oregon, Texas A&M, Florida State , Arkansas and LSU among others.

Below are my highlights from the weekend – those results I personally found most interesting. Early results are heavy on the short distances as usual, with a collegiate hurdle record being turned in by Clemson’s Brianna Rollins. Galen Rupp turned in a very nice mile however, making it look easy! And Casmir Loxsom blazed over 800. So not all was about sprinting and hurdling.



Tiger Challenge – Clemson

Brianna Rollins of Clemson breaks collegiate 60H record at 7.78 taking down Ginnie Crawford’s 7.84 from ’06. Teammate Dezerea Bryant won the 60 (7.19) & deuce ( 23.52), both outstanding early season times. On the men’s side Torian Ware of Clemson & open competitor Ed Wright both high jumped 7′ 5″.

Rollins is starting out like she is going to be this year’s Christina Manning! Manning started out hot outdoors last year with a PR 12.68 and ended up winning the NCAA title. Her PB indoors was only 7.91, So Rollins is well ahead of the pace Manning had. She could be one to watch and a possible breakout athlete this year!


Arkansas v Texas Dual

Akheem Gauntlet of Arkansas runs 20.85 in the 200. Raymond Higgs long jumps 26′ 1″.
Jayhawk Challenge. Not a tremendous time, but former sub10 sprinter Mark Jelks (9.99) wins the 60 in 6.71. Andrea Geubelle of Kansas long jumps 20′ 6.25″.

Jelks looked to be a budding star just a few seasons ago. His indoor best of 6.51 was set in ‘09, on the heels of  his outdoor 9.99 in ‘08. He was out of the sport for most of ‘10 and all of ‘11/’12. Can he have the same kind of return that we’ve seen from Gatlin? If so he could bolster US sprint fortunes.


Ohio State Invitational

Open competitor Michael Hartfield long jumps 26′ 2.25″.


Penn State – Nittany Lion Challenge

Casmir Loxsom (Penn St) screams 1:46.98 to open up the season. Penn State freshman Brannon Kidder opens at 1:48.17!

Loxsom is certainly a talented 800 meter man. And this debut bodes well for his season as only in 2011 has he run under 1:46 outdoors (PR 1:45.21 and 1:45.31). Could this be the year he finally gets into that 1:44 range outdoors?


Crimson Tide Opener

Eddie Lovett (Florida) wins 60H in 7.74.  Marcus Rowland (Auburn) & D’Angelo Cherry (Miss St) both go 6.64 in the 60. Marquis Dendy (Florida) jumps 25′ 5. Aaron Earnest (LSU) speeds 20.80 with Florida frosh Arman Hall turning 21.22. Florida 3:07.5 4×4.

Ah, the SEC makes it’s debut! Watch for these sprinters to have an impact all year long! And that Florida 4×4 featured a couple of freshmen and a pair of sophomores!



Oregon redshirt frosh Jenna Prandini opens up in the 60 @ 7.50.  Then drops to 7.48 to win the final.

Prandini is known to those of us here in California as she was State Champion in the sprints and long jump two seasons ago. Redshirted due to injury last year, she could become a major cog in Oregon’s pursuit of a title this year. The girl can sprint!


University of Washington

Galen Rupp opens up with a 3:57.15 mile.

Rupp made that look like a training run. The kid is for real, and I expect him to have a major impact globally this year. I think London was just the beginning.


Texas A&M

Freshman Jennifer Madu (Texas A&M) sprints 7.44 in her opener. Prezel Hardy (Texas A&M) 6.64 in the 60. Pretzel Hardy goes 20.78 in the deuce. Texas A&M 3:06.25 4×4.

The Aggies dominated their own invitational, but what else is new! They are going to seriously spice up what was already a hot SEC.


Kentucky Invitational

Octavius Freeman (Central Florida) opened with a 7.24 60 dash. Aurieyall Scott (Central Florida) blitzes 23.45 to upset Freeman’s 23.79 in the deuce. Noah Akwu (Mid Tenn St) speeds 20.91 deuce. Jake Blankenship scales 17′ 8.5″ in the pole vault.

Looks like Freeman has a running buddy this year at Central Florida. They could make some noise this year on the collegiate scene.


Air Force

Joe Morris (Colorado) blazes 6.57 60. Returned to run 21.01 in the deuce.

A bit of altitude at the Air Force Academy, but 6.57 is still a hot time for so early in the season! I’m dying to see what he lays down next. We can always use another hot sprinter. Though indoor success is not necessarily indicative of outdoor success!


Not a bad way to start off the year!

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6 Responses to “They’re Off & Running”

  1. Waynebo says:

    What happened to Jelks? Why was he out of the sport for over 2 years?

  2. Anderson says:

    Anaso Jobodwana also ran 20.65 in Alabama on Thursday to lead the nation/world. (Was 8th in the London final)

    • CHill says:

      Yes he did .. I saw that and somehow missed adding it to the list .. Nice follow up for him after last season .. Ran PR 20.27 in London .. I might think he has a chance to better that this year opening indoors that fast ..

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