The Bowerman: 2022 Men’s Watch List Update #2

NEW ORLEANS – It has been an unbelievable indoor season thus far.

Here are those ten male athletes who have stood out the most, according to The Bowerman Watch List Committee, and earned a spot on the Men’s Pre-NCAA Indoor Championships Watch List: Matthew Boling of Georgia, Sean “Squirrel” Burrell of LSU, Trey Cunningham of Florida State, Zach McWhorter of BYU, Brandon Miller of Texas A&M, Yared Nuguse of Notre Dame, Ayden Owens of Arkansas, Randolph Ross Jr. of North Carolina A&T, Turner Washington of Arizona State and Micah Williams of Oregon.

The Bowerman Men’s Watch List

2022 Update #2 — March 3

Year Team Events Hometown
Matthew BolingJRGeorgiaSprints/JumpsHouston, Texas
Sean BurrellSOLSUHurdlesZachary, La.
Trey CunninghamSRFlorida StateHurdlesWinfield, Ala.
Zach McWhorterSOBYUPole VaultSpringdale, Ark.
Brandon MillerSOTexas A&MMid-DistanceSt. Louis, Mo.
Yared NuguseSRNotre DameMid-Distance/DistanceLouisville, Ky.
Ayden OwensJRArkansasCombined EventsWexford, Pa.
Randolph RossJRNorth Carolina A&TSprintsGarner, N.C.
Turner WashingtonSRArizona StateThrowsTucson, Ariz.
Micah WilliamsSOOregonSprintsPortland, Ore.

ALSO RECEIVING VOTES Trevor Bassitt, Ashland (Sprints/Hurdles), Tripp Piperi, Texas (Throws), Adriaan Wildschutt, Florida State (Distance), Nico Young, Northern Arizona (Distance)

NEXT UPDATE: Thursday, March 24

Boling, who hails from Houston, Texas, has been at the top of his game since the turn of the calendar year. He is undefeated in both 60- and 200-meter finals and has just one blemish to his record in the long jump. It was this past weekend at the SEC Indoor Championships, where Boling PR’d in the 60 during the prelims (6.59), later tied for the crown in 6.64, and split a 45.51 leadoff leg to give Georgia an early advantage in a title-winning 4×400 relay. Boling lost in the long jump to Carey McLeod of Tennessee, but still owns the collegiate lead in the event with his 8.25m (27-1) effort from mid-January (He also tops the chart in the 200 at 20.27).

Burrell, who hails from Zachary, Louisiana, has yet to make his season debut in an open event. Back on January 21, Burrell anchored LSU to a 3:08.41 mark in the 4×400 relay. Don’t forget that Burrell is a 400-meter-hurdles specialist and set the world U20 record last year of 47.85 to win the individual title at the NCAA DI Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Oregon.

Cunningham, who hails from Winfield, Alabama, has been on a tear in the 60-meter hurdles. Undefeated against collegians this year, Cunningham turned it up a notch in February. He ripped a blistering 7.42 to win the event at the Tyson Invitational and added two more clockings of 7.42 or better at the ACC Indoor Championships. Cunningham lowered his PR to 7.40 in the prelims, moving to No. 2 on the all-time collegiate chart behind 2019 The Bowerman winner Grant Holloway and then added another 7.42 effort to win the crown. All told, Cunningham has the most 7.42 or better marks than anybody else in collegiate history (even Holloway).

McWhorter, who hails from Springfield, Arkansas, found his groove in his first competition of the season and hasn’t let up. He cleared 5.82m (19-1) in the pole vault back in December to match the eighth-best performer in collegiate history and become the first collegian to top 5.79m (19-0) that early in the season. McWhorter extended his collegiate lead in the event at the Dr. Sander Columbia Challenge in early February with a 5.85m (19-2¼) topper and recently placed third at the USATF Indoor Championships in Spokane, Washington.

Miller, who hails from St. Louis, Missouri, asserted himself early in the season with scorching marks and kept his foot on the gas pedal. After turning in an all-time mark in the 600 meters back in December (No. 7, 1:15.49), Miller turned his attention to his signature event, the 800. Miller went 1:47.48 in his opener and then dropped that to 1:45.24 to win going away at the SEC Indoor Championships. Not only did that extend his undefeated streak in individual events, it left him as the third-fastest performer in collegiate history with the fourth-fastest performance.

Nuguse, who hails from Louisville, Kentucky, took down one of the longest-standing collegiate indoor records with his 7:38.13 clocking over 3000 meters at the BU David Hemery Valentine Invitational. That shaved 0.46 seconds off an all-time best previously established by Alistair Cragg in 2004. Nuguse sandwiched that effort between a 3:54.46 mile at the Notre Dame Invitational and anchoring the Irish to a 9:21.73 in the distance medley relay, which is the top time ever turned in on an oversized track in collegiate history.

Owens, who hails from Wexford, Pennsylvania, etched his name into the record book at the Razorback Invitational when he totaled 6271 points in the heptathlon and cemented himself as the second-best performer in collegiate history behind 2010 The Bowerman winner and world record-holder Ashton Eaton. Since then, Owens has only competed in single events and placed fifth in the 60-meter hurdles at the SEC Indoor Championships, among other efforts.

Ross, who hails from Garner, North Carolina, is undefeated in the 400, his primary event. He opened the year with a 45.37 effort at the Clemson Invitational in mid-January and then turned in the only sub-45 second clocking in the world this year at 44.83 in mid-February. Ross is also ranked among the collegiate top-10 seasonal performers in the 200 (t-No. 6, 20.57) and helped North Carolina A&T to a top-5 seasonal mark in the 4×400 relay of 3:03.39.

Washington, who hails from Tucson, Arizona, continues to dominate the shot put circle and recently topped the podium at the Pac-12 Invitational to extend his undefeated streak to 12 competition finals. He has thrown the weighted orb farther than 21.00m (68-10¾) three times this year and owns three of the top-10 marks among collegians in 2022. Washington will have his work cut out for himself at the upcoming NCAA Championships, where he’ll duel with collegiate-leading Daniel McArthur of North Carolina and Tripp Piperi of Texas.

Williams, who hails from Portland, Oregon, hasn’t lost in a 60-meter final in his collegiate career, which includes an NCAA title he’ll defend next week. He is a perfect 4-0 in 2022 with a PR of 6.48 coming at the Cougar Classic Invitational back in mid-January. Williams has clocked three of the top-five fastest marks by collegians this season.

Four men received votes, but not enough to land on the Men’s Watch List this go-round: Trevor Bassitt of Ashland, the aforementioned Tripp Piperi of Texas, Adriaan Wildschutt of Florida State and Nico Young of Northern Arizona.

The next Men’s Watch List will come out on Thursday, March 24.

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