2021 NCAA DI Men’s Outdoor Track & Field Rating Index – Week 9
NEW ORLEANS – Welcome to the NCAA postseason!
With the start of the NCAA Division I East and West Preliminary Rounds set for Wednesday in Jacksonville, Florida, and College Station, Texas, respectively, it’s time to find out which men’s teams are set up to make a run at the national title, according to the most recent edition of the National TFRI, which was released on Tuesday by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA).
NCAA Division I — Men's Outdoor Track & Field
This Week's National Top Five
All TFRI Reports
LSU continues to hold down the top spot in the National TFRI. The Tigers qualified 20 entries for the postseason, including a whopping nine that rank among the top-2 in their respective events: Terrance Laird is No. 1 in both the 100 and 200; JuVaughn Harrison is No. 1 in both the high jump and long jump; Noah Williams is No. 1 in the 400; Damion Thomas is No. 2 in the 110H; Sean Burrell is No. 2 in the 400H; and both the 4×100 and 4×400 relays sit No. 2.
Oregon is poised to make a run at the national title, should it make it unscathed back to Hayward Field through the West Preliminary Round. The Ducks qualified athletes across 13 events, with multiple athletes in the 100 (x2), 800 (x3), 1500 (x4), steeplechase (x2), 5000 (x3) and long jump (x2). Cole Hocker, who is ranked first nationally in the 5000 and third nationally in the 1500, set his sights on becoming the first man in NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships history to sweep both events in the same year (Sheila Reid of Villanova has been the only athlete to accomplish that feat, back in 2011).
BYU sits third in the penultimate version of the National TFRI, its best rank in program history entering the NCAA postseason. The Cougars hope to see many their mid-distance and distance athletes make it through to Eugene, Oregon, as more than half of their 26 entries are in those events. Conner Mantz is the leader of the pack with his top-ranked mark in the 10,000 of 27:41.16.
Southern California is among the podium contenders at this stage of the season, earning the No. 4 spot in the National TFRI. The Trojans qualified athletes in 13 events, with Isaiah Jewett pacing the way with his No. 1 rank in the 800. Don’t overlook USC in the field, though, as it will have a double dose of athletes in the hammer, shot put and triple jump.
Texas comes it at No. 5, nearly matching its best rank this late in the season since 2012 (The Longhorns were No. 4 in 2012). Look for big efforts in the coming weeks from the likes of Micaiah Harris in the 200, Steffin McCarter in the long jump, O’Brien Wasome in the triple jump and Leo Neugebauer in the decathlon, among other athletes.
Here are the rest of the top-10 teams in Week 9: No. 6 Florida State, No. 7 Florida, No. 8 Arkansas, No. 9 Texas A&M and No. 10 Houston. Both the Cougars and the Razorbacks made some big moves between Week 8 and Week 9, improving their positions three spots and six spots, respectively.
The 2021 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships will be held from June 9-12 at the reimagined Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon.