The Bowerman: 2018 Men’s Mid-Indoor Watch List

NEW ORLEANS – If an athlete’s name appears on The Bowerman Watch List, it means he’s done something special, something outstanding.

That’s the case for the 10 men named to The Bowerman Mid-Indoor Watch List, released Thursday by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA). The Bowerman, collegiate track & field’s highest honor, is bestowed each December at the USTFCCCA Convention to the most outstanding male and female collegiate track & field athletes from the previous season.

The Bowerman Watch List: 2018 Men’s Mid-Indoor Update

(Click student-athletes’ names for their TFRRS page)

KeAndre Bates SR Florida Jumps El Paso, Texas
Trey Culver SR Texas Tech Jumps Lubbock, Texas
Jordan Geist FR Arizona Throws Saxonburg, Pa.
Grant Holloway SO Florida Hurdles/Jumps Chesapeake, Va.
Josh Kerr SO (i)/JR (o) New Mexico Mid-Distance Edinburgh, Scotland
Justyn Knight SR Syracuse Distance Vaughan, Ontario
Ioannis "John" Kyriazis SR Texas A&M Throws Athens, Greece
Chris Nilsen SO South Dakota Pole Vault Kansas City, Mo.
Divine Oduduru FR (i)/ SO (o) Texas Tech Sprints Delta State, Nigeria
Michael Saruni SO UTEP Mid-Distance Ravine, Kenya
Also Receiving Votes: Nathon Allen (Auburn), Isaiah Harris (Penn State), Matt Ludwig (Akron).
NEXT: March 1

Six of the 10 men from the Preseason Watch List returned to the second index of the 2018 season, while four others swapped spots with those who failed to impress The Bowerman Watch List Committee since then.

Michael Saruni is one of those newcomers to the Watch List – and boy, has he stood out.

Saruni turned in two all-time performances during the month of January. It started at the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Invitational where he clocked an all-time world best of 1:14.79 over 600 meters. The following week Saruni turned his attention to the 800 and scorched the track at Texas Tech to the tune of 1:45.19, the second fastest time in collegiate indoor history and the fastest time ever run by a collegian on U.S. soil.

Speaking of Texas Tech, there are two athletes from that program on the Watch List: Trey Culver and Divine Oduduru. Culver, the reigning back-to-back indoor high jump champion, earned his spot after he cleared 2.33m (7-7¾) at the Corky Classic in mid-January, which equaled the fourth best mark in collegiate indoor history. Oduduru notched the third fastest time in collegiate indoor history over 200 meters (20.25) and is currently tied for the third fastest time over 60 meters this season (6.60).

Culver, Oduduru and Saruni weren’t the only ones putting a scare into the record book.

Grant Holloway left smoke trails behind him during the Clemson Invitational. Holloway shot out of the blocks and claimed the third fastest time in collegiate indoor history in the 60 hurdles (7.49). Then the following week, Holloway moved up to No. 2 on the Descending Order List in the long jump. Holloway also helped Florida turn in an all-time top-10 time in the 4×400, making him the only male in collegiate history to be in the top-10 lists of both the 60 hurdles and 4×400.

Josh Kerr competed in the Wanamaker Men’s Mile at the NYRR Millrose Games and nearly won it. Kerr finished runner-up to Chris O’Hare, but he could find solace in the fact that his time of 3:54.72 is the sixth fastest in collegiate indoor history. He is the third man to be on the all-time top-10 lists of both the mile and the 1500, joining 2013 The Bowerman finalist Lawi Lalang and nine-time Watch List honoree Miles Batty.

Justyn Knight also ventured to New York City for the Millrose Games and contended for the win. Knight took second place in the 3000 with a time of 7:45.86 – which is right outside the all-time top-10 – one week after setting a PR of 3:55.82 in the mile.

Jordan Geist became the first freshman to be named to the Men’s Watch List this season after launching the shot 21.45m (70-4½) at the Washington Invitational. Geist sits right outside the all-time top-10 as the eighth best performer in collegiate indoor history and is the first Arizona male athlete to appear on the Watch List since June 4, 2014.

KeAndre Bates is up to his old tricks once again. Bates currently leads the nation in the triple jump with his mark of 16.48m (54-1) and is third in the long jump (7.88m/25-10¼). He is the only NCAA DI male athlete ranked in the top-5 nationally in both events.

Chris Nilsen nearly hit an all-conditions PR at the Jack Johnson Classic when he cleared 5.72m (18-9¼). Nilsen’s PR is just one centimeter more, but that mark of 5.72m ties him with Scott Roth as the 10th best performer in collegiate indoor history.

The final man on the Watch List is Ioannis Kyriazis, who has yet to compete.

Nathon Allen, Isaiah Harris and Matt Ludwig all received votes for the Watch List, but not enough to warrant a spot in the top-10.

The Bowerman Watch List will return March 1 with the Pre-NCAA Indoor index.

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