Men’s NCAA Track and Field Championships Bring Huge Excitement to Eugene

11,644 people were in attendance to watch the NCAA Men’s Track and Field National Championships hosted at Hayward Field. The day was started with excitement as the Houston Cougars set the 4×100 NCAA, meet, and stadium record with a time of 38.17. That was just the first of the records on the day. USC sophomore Michael Norman ran a 43.61 to win the 400m. Norman made himself the sixth fastest athlete ever in that event. It was the fastest time in the world this year, as well as a NCAA, meet, and stadium record. His teammate Rai Benjamin followed him up in the 400m hurdles and ran a time of 47.03 to win the event. That’s the second fastest time ever, and also set the NCAA, Hayward, and meet records. USC finished their huge day in the 4×400, winning the event with a time of 2:59.00, breaking the three records. But USC only took third in the team standings. It was Georgia who triumphed with 52 points to take the team title. Florida finished runner-up with 42 points. It was a meet full of close races and upsets. NCAA record holder and heavy favorite Josh Kerr of New Mexico finished third in the 1500m after being out-kicked by Wisconsin’s Oliver Hoare. Isaiah Harris of Penn State shocked NCAA record holder Michael Saruni of UTEP in the 800m. Sean McGorty of Stanford upset NCAA Cross Country champion Justyn Knight to take the 5,000m. The 200m and the 110m hurdles were each decided by a hundredth of a second. As for the Oregon Ducks, a bit of a quiet day from them to finish with just 8 points and tied for 35th place. Sam Prakel took sixth in the 1500m and Cravon Gillespie took fourth in the 100m to get those points for the Ducks. The NCAA Championships will continue Saturday as the women will get their turn. First field event is slated for 3:00, and first running event will take place at 3:32 PM.

Meet Story ( by Sean MacPherson)

Meet Audio

Oregon Middle Distance Runner Sam Prakel

Oregon Middle Distance Runner Mick Stanovsek

Houston 4×100 Relay Team

Oregon Sprinter Cravon Gillespie

USC Sprinter Michael Norman

Florida Hurdler Grant Holloway

AUDIO: Both the Men and Women’s Side Look Ahead to NCAA Track and Field Championships

As the preliminary rounds of the NCAA Championships are set to begin tomorrow both the men and the women held separate press conferences. Both sides spoke on the long season that was but are now fully focused on the task ahead and obtaining championships. A bit of history is on the line as well. This will be the last meet before the renovations begin to Hayward Field this summer. The athletes and coaches reflected on what Hayward Field has meant for them in their careers. For the third consecutive year the men and women will compete on separate days. The men will hold their preliminary rounds tomorrow (June 6th) and their finals on Friday (June 8th). The women will start their preliminary rounds on Thursday (June 7th) and the finals will be on Saturday (June 9th)

Men’s Press Conference¬†

Florida Head Coach Mike Holloway, Texas Tech Head Coach Wes Kittley, Damarcus Simpson of Oregon, Michael Norman of USC and Josh Kerr of New Mexico

Women’s Press Conference

Oregon Head Coach Robert Johnson, USC Head Coach Caryl Smith Gilbert, Georgia Head Coach Petros Kyprianou, Karissa Schweizer of Missouri and Sydney McLaughlin of Kentucky

-Gabriel Ornelas