Jesse Owens Completes The Quadruple-Double
Many star athletes have won four individual titles in their career at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships, but only one has done so at the same meet: Jesse Owens.
Here’s the kicker: Owens didn’t just do it once. He did so twice in back-to-back years.
On this day in 1936, Owens duplicated his four-title performance from the previous year. And just like he did in 1935, Owens won all four on the same day.
The United Press called Owens winning the 100 meters, 200 meters, 200-yard low hurdles and the long jump “a grand slam,” and noted that he won the field event with “plenty to spare.”
In addition to those NCAA titles, Owens held world records in four events from the previous year when he had his unbelievable “Day of Days,” when he set them in a span of 45 minutes at the 1935 Big Ten Championships. But one world record was missing from Owens’ collection. That would be the 100 meters, since the NCAA only contested the 100-yard version at its meet.
That wouldn’t be the case at the 1936 NCAA Championships, as it was also an Olympic year. The NCAA held all Olympic events at their metric distances and Owens left nothing to chance.
After winning the long jump, Owens blistered the track inside Chicago’s Amos Alonzo Stagg Field to the tune of 10.2 for 100 meters. It was the first legal 10.2 the world had ever seen and no one would run faster for another 20 years. Owens then added victories in the 200 (21.3) and 220-yard low hurdles (23.1) to complete the quadruple-double.
Owens’ career, of course, became legendary after the 1936 Olympics in Berlin when he won four gold medals. He later became the first athlete to receive both the Presidential Medal of Freedom (1976) and Congressional Gold Medal (1988), the latter posthumously after his 1980 death.
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.
Ottey’s Audacious Quadruple In 1983
Merlene Ottey of Nebraska sought to win NCAA titles in the 100, 200, 400 and 4×100 relay in 1983.
He’s Great: LSU’s Davis Soars To History
Walter Davis, who turns 41 today, scored 22¼ points at the 2002 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championship to lead LSU to the national team title.
Scott Neilson Is NCAA T&F’s Mr. Canada
Scott Neilson of Washington won four consecutive hammer throw titles at the NCAA DI Outdoor Track & Field Championships between 1976 and 1979.
A Crowning Moment For Rogers In 2017
Back in 2017, Raevyn Rogers of Oregon dazzled at the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships with a victory in the 800 and a sizzling anchor on the winning 4×400 relay.
Robinson Brothers Make NCAA T&F History
Can you name the first set of siblings to win NCAA Track & Field titles? We’ll give you a hint: Their last name is Robinson.
UTEP’s Nyambui Goes 7-For-7 Outdoors
Suleiman Nyambui of UTEP never lost a race at the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships. He went a perfect 7-for-7 over four years.
Oxy’s Gutowski Vaults To Record Heights
Bob Gutowski of Occidental won the pole vault at the 1957 NCAA Outdoor Championships with a clearance of 4.82m (15-9¾), a mark that surpassed the world record but was never ratified.
Guthrie-Gresham Generates Greatness
Diane Guthrie-Gresham of George Mason broke the collegiate record in the heptathlon with 6527 points at the 1995 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships.
Conway Raises The Bar In 1989
Hollis Conway of Southwestern Louisiana set the American record and collegiate record in the high jump at the 1989 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships!
Conley Soars; Razorbacks Complete Triple Crown
Mike Conley scored 28¾ points to lead Arkansas to its first outdoor team title, which completed the vaunted “Triple Crown,” as the program also captured the cross country and indoor titles already in the academic year.