Four Honored as Division I National Indoor Track and Field Athletes of the Year
By Keith Nunez, USTFCCCA
March 17, 2009
NEW ORLEANS – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announced the NCAA Division I National Indoor Track and Field Athletes of the Year. Two men and two women received the annual honor as voted by Division I coaches following the NCAA Division I Indoor Championships.
Those honored were Women’s Track Athlete of the Year, Jenny Barringer; Women’s Field Athlete of the Year, Destinee Hooker; Men’s Track Athlete of the Year, Galen Rupp; and the Men’s Field Athlete of the Year, Ashton Eaton.
All of the student-athletes honored won individual championships at the Division I Indoor Track and Field National Championship meet.
The 2009 USTFCCCA Division I National Indoor Track and Field Athletes of the Year:
Jenny Barringer – University of Colorado, Boulder
Colorado’s Barringer captured the 3,000 meter run crown in record fashion at the NCAA Division I Indoor Track and Field Championships. Her time (8:42.03) was a new collegiate, facility, school, and NCAA meet record, and ranks fourth in the world this year. The senior has set CU records in the mile, the 3k, and the 5k this indoor season and owns the top collegiate marks in all three events. She was the first Colorado women’s athlete to run the 3k in under nine minutes and won her first Big 12 indoor title while setting a new collegiate record in the mile (4:25.91).
Destinee Hooker – University of Texas
Hooker, a junior from San Antonio, Texas, made NCAA history at the Division I Indoor Track and Field Championships as she cleared 6’6” in the high jump to win her first career NCAA indoor title. Hooker shattered a nine-year old collegiate record. Her clearance in the high jump was a new personal best by a full inch and broke the Texas A&M Gilliam Indoor Record she set only a few weeks earlier at the Big 12 Conference Indoor Championships. Her Big 12 title was the third of her career and she became only the second person in Big 12 history to win the indoor high jump title three times.
Galen Rupp – University of Oregon
Rupp, a senior who had never won an NCAA Indoor track and field title before in his career, now has three. The standout distance runner completed a rare sweep as he won the 3k, the 5k, and anchored the winning distance medley relay team. His 22.5 points would have tied Rupp for 10th in the team standings. Rupp now owns 12 career All-American honors, becoming the most decorated student-athlete in Oregon history. Earlier this indoor season, Rupp broke the men’s American Record in the 5,000 (13:18.12) and ran to an all-time American Collegiate Best in the 3,000 (7:44.69).
Ashton Eaton – University of Oregon
Eaton, a junior, helped Oregon secure its first indoor track and field title with his win in the men’s heptathlon. The Bend, Oregon native finished the two day competition with 5,988 points, the second-highest heptathlon total of his career. He started the competition in fine fashion running a new personal best in the 60 meter hurdles (7.90) and clearing a personal indoor best in the pole vault (16’8.35”). Eaton entered the NCAA Division I Indoor Championships with a heptathlon score of 6,174 points, the second highest total ever by a collegiate in the event.