WEEKEND ROUNDUP (ITF): Collegians Demolish The Record Book
We told you that this would be a big weekend in collegiate indoor track & field.
We just didn’t know how big of a weekend it would turn out to be.
Well, buckle your seatbelts, folks: We’re about to go for a ride.
These were just some of the 19 different collegiate-leading marks that were turned over Valentine’s Day Weekend. Go ahead and read that again: 19.
We’re Talking World History, Folks
Name a better duo than Texas A&M and the 4×400 relay.
After what happened Saturday afternoon at the Tyson Invitational, the only thing track & field aficionados can name are three more teams and eight more performances better in world history than what the Aggie women turned inside the Randal Tyson Track Center.
Texas A&M got the baton around in 3:26.27 to demolish the old collegiate record and become the fourth fastest team in world history to go along with the ninth fastest performance.
After Jania Martin opened with a 53.04 split, Charokee Young and Syaira Richardson turned up the heat. Young split 51.86, followed by a 51.12 effort by Richardson, which put them on record pace with Athing Mu on the anchor. Mu had already split 50.03 this year, so all eyes were on the freshman from Trenton, New Jersey.
It didn’t appear as if Mu broke a sweat as she covered two laps in 50.27, stopping the clock at 3:26.27 and leaving the Aggies behind only Russia, Team USA and Poland on the world list.
He’s Going All The Way Up
KC Lightfoot finally got the six-meter bar he coveted so much.
The Baylor standout became the 13th man in world history to clear 6.00m (19-8¼) indoors, doing so on his third attempt at the height on Saturday at the Texas Tech Shootout in Lubbock.
𝐊𝐂 𝐋𝐢𝐠𝐡𝐭𝐟𝐨𝐨𝐭— USTFCCCA (@USTFCCCA) February 13, 2021
𝟔.𝟎𝟎𝐦 (𝟏𝟗-𝟖¼). pic.twitter.com/cvcePHSYV5
Needless to say, that also bettered his previous collegiate record.
Earlier in the competition, Lightfoot also cleared 5.80m (19-0¼) and 5.90m (19-4¼) to move ahead of Shawn Barber for the most 19-foot clearances in collegiate indoor history.
Forks Up For New Shot Put Record
Turner Washington knew he needed a big mark on his final throw in Lubbock.
The Arizona State junior sat second to conference rival McKay Johnson of Southern California in the shot put. Johnson hit 21.45m (70-4½) on his first attempt, which put him up nearly two feet on Washington, who sat runner-up with a fifth heave of 20.88m (68-6).
Well, Washington put everything behind the orb and it sailed 21.85m (71-8¼) through the air to make him the collegiate record holder in the event. Washington’s huge effort took down the near two-year-old all-time best previously established by Payton Otterdahl of North Dakota State.
It’s A Bird … It’s A Plane …
Isaac Grimes soared into the collegiate record book on Friday afternoon.
Locked in an incredible long jump competition at the Tyson Invitational in Fayetteville, Arkansas, Grimes took his game to an entirely different level in Round 5 and Round 6.
After JuVaughn Harrison of LSU edged ahead in Round 4 at 8.09m (26-6½), Grimes leapt 8.27m (27-1¾) in Round 5 to take the lead for good. That also notched the best indoor mark by a collegian since 2015 when Marquis Dendy went 8.28m (27-2) in his Bowerman year.
Grimes was just getting warmed up, though.
The Florida State senior flew through the air in Round 6 on his way to 8.33m (27-2), which matched the fifth best performance in collegiate history (Reggie Kelly of Jackson State). That is also the best indoor mark by a collegian since 2014 when Jarrion Lawson went 8.39m (27-6½).
Blistering Marks At Tiger Paw Invitational
A number of strong performances were turned in at the Tiger Paw Invitational.
For starters, North Carolina A&T athletes had themselves quite the weekend.
Randolph Ross won the 400 in a collegiate-leading 45.21 and then doubled back the following day in the 200 with a 20.50 effort that puts him among the national top-5. Trevor Stewart finished third in the same heat of the 400 in 45.55, while Javonte Harding also hit a national top-10 mark in the 200 the following day in 20.54 out of a different heat.
Stewart ended up third, because Jacory Patterson of Virginia Tech went 45.24 for what is now the third fastest time among collegians (Bryce Deadmon went 45.22 in a solo effort at the Tyson Invitational).
Abby Steiner of Kentucky clocked a collegiate-leading 22.52 to win her heat by more than one second and demolish the facility record.
It Wasn’t Just About NCAA Division I
We saw nine division-leading marks each turned in by athletes in NCAA Division II and NCAA Division III, three from athletes in the NAIA and six from athletes in the NJCAA. (NOTE: This post was updated at 5:50 pm CT on Saturday, February 13. It will be updated on Sunday to reflect an updated total.)