Which Collegiate Indoor Records Could Fall In 2018?
The collegiate indoor record book took an absolute thumping last year.
A total of nine collegiate indoor records were either broken or tied between January and March.
By the time the 2017 NCAA Division I Indoor Track & Field Championships ended, the record book had more than enough.
Rewriting The Record Book In 2017
|Men’s 60||Christian Coleman||6.45|
|Men’s Mile||Edward Cheserek||3:52.01|
|Men’s 4×400||Texas A&M||3:02.52|
|Women’s 60||Hannah Cunliffe||7.07A|
|Women’s 800||Jazmine Fray||2:00.69|
|Women’s 4×400||Southern California||3:27.03|
|Women’s TJ||Keturah Orji||14.32m|
|Women’s SP||Raven Saunders||19.56m|
Don’t look now, but 2018 could be just as impressive – if not more so.
Four of the six individuals who set collegiate indoor records last year return for encore performances (Hannah Cunliffe, Women’s 60; Jazmine Fray, Women’s 800; Keturah Orji, Women’s Triple Jump; Raven Saunders, Women’s Shot Put) as do a healthy majority of the athletes who had a hand in each of the three record-breaking relay efforts.
Each of those four women has a viable shot of raising the extraordinary bar they set for themselves in 2017. We’d go with Orji, Saunders, Cunliffe and Fray, in that order. All will be buoyed by great training partners, especially Fray who will be joined by Sammy Watson, owner of Texas A&M’s 1000-meter record after her collegiate debut.
Here are a few more records that could fall during the 2018 indoor track & field season.
Women’s 200 Meters
Current Record: Bianca Knight, Texas – 22.40
Biggest Threat: Ariana Washington, Oregon
Ariana Washington scorched the 200-meter oval last year at NCAAs on the way to her third career NCAA title. Washington crossed the finish line in 22.42, the second fastest time in collegiate history.
Washington is a seasoned senior now and has turned in three career sub-23 second marks in the 200. Her first came at the Don Kirby Invitational (22.80), followed by another during the NCAA prelims (22.57) and then her winning effort the following afternoon.
If Washington runs to her ability and makes it to College Station, Texas, historical things could be in store for the California native.
To wit: Last year Deajah Stevens appeared to have broken Knight’s record – and the American record – in the NCAA prelims, but was ruled to have stepped outside of her lane. Stevens broke the tape in 22.28.
Women’s 5000 Meters
Current Record: Emily Sisson, Providence – 15:12.22
Biggest Threat: Karissa Schweizer, Missouri
The reigning indoor and outdoor champion at this distance is on a mission.
After placing 11th at the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships, Schweizer opened up her indoor season with a bang at the Boston University Season Opener. Schweizer won a stacked heat of the 5000 with a time of 15:17.31, which is the fifth fastest time in collegiate history (New Mexico’s Ednah Kurgat wasn’t too far behind in 15:19.03, the seventh fastest time).
Last year Schweizer ran a fast time to start the season and punched an early ticket to NCAAs. This one should hold up as well, so we might not get to see her race another 5000 until she arrives in College Station, Texas. That would be OK, as it would likely set up to be a thrilling rematch with Kurgat.
Current Record: Edward Cheserek, Oregon – 3:52.01
Biggest Threat: Josh Kerr, New Mexico
Hear us out for a second.
Who else should break it but the NCAA mile champ from 2017 that kept Cheserek from his historic triple?
Here’s a caveat: Kerr hasn’t run faster than 3:59.90 at the distance. But, during the outdoor season he turned in an all-time performance at the Bryan Clay Invitational when he covered 1500 meters in 3:35.99, the sixth fastest time in collegiate history. Convert that to a mile and his time would have been 3:53.2, not too far off from 3:52.01 (We know it’s indoor versus outdoor and all, but just go with it).
Kerr should get his chances to run against some talented competition – like he did at the Bryan Clay Invitational – and if that happens, he could prove his mettle once again.