Dual Defending Champion Aggies Move to Nation’s Top Spot Once Again
By Tom Lewis, USTFCCCA
May 4, 2010
NEW ORLEANS – The men and women of Texas A&M are both on top of the NCAA Division I national team rankings as announced by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on Tuesday morning. Both Texas A&M squads are the NCAA’s defending champions, and, as the postseason looms, several teams start to make their claims to the national top 10.
The Texas A&M men remain in the No. 1 position for the second-straight week while the Aggie women return to the top-ranked spot after a week at No. 2, but it is the first week in the 2010 outdoor season in which both teams are in the lead.
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MEN: Teams See Large Gains, Sizeable Drops After Busy Weekend
You may have heard about Liberty’s Sam Chelanga resetting his own 10,000-meter collegiate record this past weekend, but that was only part of the national story as several teams started to kick into high gear in preparation for their respective postseasons. A hefty amount of the top 25 shuffle this week stems from national-caliber performances as last weekend’s Payton Jordan Cardinal Invitational, hosted by Stanford, the Texas Twilight in Austin, the Oregon Relays. In addition, a nice array of dual-meet competitions between UCLA and USC, Nebraska and Texas Tech, and Washington and Washington State added to team’s national-ranking totals.
No. 1 Texas A&M (311.51) remains in the top-ranked spot for the second-straight week and needed performances from this week’s Texas Twilight to stay ahead of a surging No. 2 Oregon (287.71) team. This past weekend, Aggie junior Tabarie Henry clocked 45.20 over 400 meters to move to the third position in the collegiate ranks. In addition, a wind-aided jump of 26-¼ (7.93m) by junior Melvin Echard moved him into a top-five spot in the NCAA national lists.
The second-ranked Ducks flew up the chain from last week’s No. 9 standing. Several performances, including a national-leading performance in the javelin by Cyrus Hostetler (256-6, 78.19m) propelled Oregon to a 113-point surge on the ranking chart. Andrew Wheating claimed a national-leading time in the 1500 meters (3:37.83) and A.J. Acosta followed with a 3:39.44 clocking to now rank third nationally in the event this year.
Florida was idle this weekend and holds to No.3 for the second-straight week. The Gators still have the national-leading 4×100- and 4×400-relay times in the nation, as well as national-leader Calvin Smith in the 400.
Texas Tech moved up to No. 4 in the nation despite falling to now-No. 15 Nebraska, 104-98. From a national championship perspective, the Red Raiders’ stock actually climbed due to freshman Bryce Lamb. Lamb now holds the top NCAA seed in the long jump after notching a wind-aided win of 26-5 (8.05m) in that dual.
No. 5 USC went up two spots after performances made in the Trojan dual-meet, 96-67, victory over UCLA. Arizona State fell to No. 6 after actually gaining three ranking points. An idle week for LSU did not help as far as the rankings are concerned. The Tigers fell five spots from a lofty position at No. 7 due to several performances in the sprints and jumps across the country that dropped individual point totals across the Tigers’ ranking board. Auburn fell three spots to No. 8 and Florida State is now No. 9. Oklahoma moved into the top 10 by advancing one spot from last week.
All told, the SEC again claims eight teams in the top 25 with the Big 12 next at seven.
WOMEN: Texas A&M and LSU Flip-Flop, While Texas Claims Top 10 Spot With Ten-Position Jump
Top-ranked Texas A&M (372.61) reclaimed the nation’s top spot after a one-week absence. At the Texas Twilight this past weekend, senior Porscha Lucas claimed the collegiate top-spot in the 200 meters with a 22.85 run. The Aggies, who already hold national leads in the 4×100 and 400 meters (Jessica Beard), have six individuals or relays in the NCAA’s top five.
LSU, the former No. 1, sat idle this past weekend while the rest of the top five remained unchanged with No. 3 Oregon, No. 4 Oklahoma, No. 5 Virginia Tech staying in their past-week spots.
No. 6 Texas was the big-gainer this past weekend, moving from No. 16, as a result of 400-meter combo Angele Cooper and Chantel Malone. The duo recorded times of 52.18 and 52.35, respectively, last weekend on their home track to claim the current 2-4 spots in the national descending order list. Copper is also ranked third in the nation in the 400-meter hurdles and as anchor of the fifth-ranked 4×400-relay squad.
Clemson dropped a spot to No. 7 while No. 8 Penn State and No. 9 Arkansas notched big jumps. Penn State went up seven spots as a result of Bridget Franek’s 15:46.08 run in the 5000 meters, a time that is third in the nation. Arkansas’ Katie Stripling cleared 14-5½ (4.41m) in the pole vault this weekend for the national lead in that event. Florida, remaining idle, dropped three spots to No. 10.
The ACC is holding strong as the conferences’ leader with five teams in the national top 25.
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NCAA Division I
Men’s Outdoor Track & Field National Team Rankings
2010 Week #5 – May 4
|Dropped Out: North Carolina (18)|
Women’s Outdoor Track & Field National Team Rankings
2010 Week #5 – May 4
|Dropped Out: South Carolina (19), BYU (22)|