Two Long Jump Titles For Carol Lewis

Celebrating A Century of NCAA Track & Field Championships

Two Long Jump Titles For Carol Lewis

Carol Lewis of Houston had at least three achievements with her long jump victory at the 1983 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships.

Many would quickly note that it made her part of the first brother-sister combination of NCAA track & field champions: Her brother Carl had claimed a pair of outdoor long jump titles in 1980 and 1981 (as well as the 100 meters in the latter).

Houston fans might be first to point out that Carol’s win is the only NCAA title earned by a Cougar on the UH campus, as the former Robertson Stadium was the host site for the 1983 meet.

The third achievement merely gives a glimpse of Carol’s success as a collegiate long jumper: She became the first – and still only – woman in the event to set meet records in two NCAA Division I outdoor meets, having broken the wind-legal record she set in 1982. In fact, Lewis would later add to that last distinction when she broke her own NCAA meet record in 1985 for a third time.

The 1983 NCAA Outdoor Championships made up for a somewhat forgettable 1982 NCAA meet, when a freshman Lewis – already the collegiate record holder earlier in the year at 6.73m (22-1) – jumped just 6.59m (21-7½) for third place (Her wind-legal 6.50m (21-4) gave her the record).

That 1982 NCAA Outdoor Championship meet was the first held with women, so Lewis’ mark – the best legal jump in the rainy/windy conditions at Provo – stood up as the meet record when the NCAA meet made its first and only stop the next year in Houston.

On her home runway, Lewis led the qualifying at 6.70m (21-11¾) – but temporarily lost the meet record as defending champ Jennifer Inniss of Cal State Los Angeles leapt 6.65m (21-10) with legal wind, while Lewis’ jump was wind-aided. Two days later in the final, Lewis claimed victory with a legal 6.70m (21-11¾) to reclaim the meet record.

While it would be two more years before Lewis jumped again in the NCAA Outdoor meet – she bypassed the long jump for relay duty in 1984 – her level of long jumping had continued to improve. In August 1983, Lewis earned the bronze medal at the World Championships and in 1984 improved the collegiate record to 6.97m (22-10½). It was also in 1984 when Lewis won the U.S. title and finished ninth at the Los Angeles Olympic Games.

In 1985 the NCAA Championships returned to Texas – this time in Austin – where after two jumps a meet record was the last thing on Lewis’ mind as she sat with two fouls. Carol had a short conversation with brother Carl and responded with a cautious 6.23m (20-5¼), then sewed up the title with a meet record 6.73m (22-1) on her last effort.

By the end of that summer, Lewis twice jumped American records – and “all-dates” collegiate bests – of 7.01m (23-0) and 7.04m (23-1¼).

posted: October 16, 2020
The NCAA's First Championships

The NCAA and collegiate track & field will mark a momentous milestone in the spring of 2021 -- the 100th anniversary of the NCAA Championships and with that, the NCAA Track & Field Championships. In June 1921, the University of Chicago hosted the first track & field championships in NCAA history.

This point can’t be emphasized enough: Not only was the event the first for NCAA track & field, but the first championships for any sport under the sponsorship of the NCAA.

To celebrate, over each of the next 365 days, the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) will celebrate moments, student-athletes, and coaches that have made a century’s worth of championships special. From humble beginnings to important historical milestones to the modern-day, collegiate track & field has evolved with the American society.

The 2021 edition of the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships begin with preliminary round action on May 27-29 in Jacksonville, Fla., and College Station, Texas. The championships final site and culmination of the celebration is slated for June 9-12, 2021 at the newly rebuilt Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore.

Memorable Moments
Peters At Head Of Jav U’s Class

Anderson Peters won back-to-back javelin titles at the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships and broke and bettered the meet record twice.

Fitzgerald Hurdled Into The Record Books
June 4, 1983

Benita Fitzgerald won back-to-back 100H titles at the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships in 1982 & 1983, setting a collegiate record and meet record with her time of 12.84 in 1983.

An Illustrious Career For Charlie Craig

Charlie Craig won the triple jump at the 1964 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships. Then, after a long coaching career, he was inducted into the USTFCCCA Coaches Hall of Fame!

Two Laps To Glory For Everett
June 1, 1990

Mark Everett set a meet record of 1:44.70 in the 800 Meters at the 1990 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships.

Brooks Made NCAA Shot Put History

Tia Brooks won back-to-back shot put titles at the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships and broke the collegiate indoor record in the event in 2013.

Scott One-Upped Himself In 1978
June 3, 1978

Steve Scott of UC Irvine won the 1500-meter title at the 1978 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships, one year after finishing runner-up at the same meet as an NCAA Division II athlete.