2019 NCAA DI Men’s Indoor Track & Field Rating Index – Week 5
NEW ORLEANS – Conference Championship Weekend is upon us!
Before teams battle for conference bragging rights, let’s take a look at the newest NCAA Division I Men’s Indoor Track & Field National Rating Index that was released by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on Monday.
Speaking of conference bragging rights, be sure to check out Conference TFRI, which debuted last week! It could give you a good idea of which teams might capture conference glory this weekend.
There were no changes to the order of the top-7 teams from Week 4 to Week 5 as most of those squads rested their legs so they could be fresh in battle this weekend.
Top-ranked Texas Tech is No. 1 for the sixth week in a row and will be joined at the Big 12 Championships in Lubbock by No. 7 Texas, the only other conference team ranked in the top-10. No. 2 Texas A&M will face off against No. 3 Florida, No. 5 LSU and No. 6 Georgia at the hard-hitting SEC Championships in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
Wisconsin climbed three spots from Week 4 to Week 5, coming in at No. 8. This is the best the Badgers have been ranked by the TFRI since 2014 and they can thank Oliver Hoare, Morgan McDonald and the rest of the DMR team for that. Hoare and McDonald, who shined two weeks ago at the NYRR Millrose Games in the mile and 3000, respectively, teamed up with two others this past weekend to clock the No. 2 time in the nation in the DMR.
Oregon is back in the top-10 after Charlie Hunter and James West ripped off a pair of strong times in the mile. Hunter crossed the finish line in 3:57.74 this past weekend, while West was right on his heels in 3:57.75. That left Hunter and West as the fifth and sixth fastest milers in the nation this season.
Southern Miss made the biggest move in the top-25 this week as it went from No. 33 in Week 4 to No. 14 in Week 5. The Golden Eagles, who had never been ranked higher than No. 30, flew up the TFRI thanks to McKinley West’s effort in the 200 this past weekend. West clocked the fifth fastest time nationally in the event (20.66) and sits No. 10 in the 60 (6.61).
Other new additions to the top-25 include No. 18 South Carolina, No. 20 Iowa State and No. 23 Arizona. While this isn’t new territory for the Gamecocks, who have now been ranked in the top-20 in each of the past five years, the Cyclones and the Wildcats are blazing new trails. Iowa State hasn’t been ranked this high in the TFRI since 2015 and when you couple Arizona’s rank in the preseason (No. 21) with this one, it marks the first time in the past six years that the Wildcats have been ranked in the top-25 twice in one season.
The biggest overall jumps in the National Rating Index this week belonged to Notre Dame (up 57 spots), Monmouth (up 32 spots) and South Carolina State (up 25 spots).
Be sure to check back throughout the remainder of the season as the National Rating Index will continue to shift ahead of the 2019 NCAA Division I Indoor Track & Field Championships, which will be held from March 8-9 in Birmingham, Alabama.