UTEP’s Nyambui Goes 7-For-7 Outdoors

Celebrating A Century of NCAA Track & Field Championships

UTEP’s Nyambui Goes 7-For-7 Outdoors


Suleiman Nyambui of UTEP racked up NCAA titles like clockwork. He never lost a race at the NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships, winning four consecutive at 10,000 meters from 1979 to 1982, plus three consecutive at 5000 meters from 1980 to 1982.

When Nyambui won his fourth title in a row at 10,000 meters in 1982, he was smiling with four fingers held high as he crossed the finish line. And three years earlier, he set the still-standing meet record of 28:01.30 in a race where three men went sub-28:10.00 (No other final had that much depth since, but there are several which had two men under that barrier).

The Tanzanian was as dominant as his team.

The Miners won team titles all four years Nyambui was on campus and completed the rare Triple Crown three years in a row, having won NCAA team titles indoors and during the cross country season. The only year that UTEP didn’t win the Triple Crown with Nyambui on its roster was in 1979 when it lost by one point to Villanova.

Indoors he also won seven titles and is a four-time mile champion (only Jim Ryun has as many as three). Add in a cross country win and his 15 individual NCAA D1 titles is the most (Edward Cheserek later tied that and has the overall best with 17).

Nyambui was cognizant of criticism that he was older (29 as a senior) and more experienced than much of his competition. He told Jon Hendershott of Track & Field News: “I have to say that I don’t think it is especially good for a young American kid to have to come out of high school, to college, and have to compete against me. But we also have to understand that this is a chance for everyone to learn, in the race and out. The American guys will learn from competing against me and other Africans and they will get better, too.”

posted: June 28, 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
A Crowning Moment For Rogers In 2017
June 10, 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.

Oxy’s Gutowski Vaults To Record Heights
June 15, 1957

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
June 2, 1995

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
June 3, 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
June 1, 1985

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.