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Saturday, April 11, 2009

Where Track is King

Oregon's men won the NCAA indoor, but were only fourth at their indoor conference championships (behind UCLA, Cal and Washington State). So they need all they can get for the Pac-10 championships.

Footballers to the rescue. The Eugene Register-Guard reports that three gridiron stars came to Hayward Field to pass the baton this week, and are scheduled to go again today.

One of those footballers is Walter Thurmond, who has run the high hurdles for the Ducks in '06 and '07. The other two haven't run track since high school but appear to be pretty good: LaMichael James was a Texas state 100m champ, and Jamere Holland was a California state 100m and 200m champ.

Nice to be someplace where the head football coach is expected to return the assistant track coach's calls, no?


vgras said...

I truly doubt that Oregon cared much about the indoor "conference" meet. It's not even called Pac-10s and they didn't run all their top guys in the right events.
However it is true that you'll rarely see football players compete in track at the track's coach request.
I wonder how much playing time these guys are getting?

Xavier Carter mentioned in a recent article how Les Miles did not approve of Carter missing spring football practices for the track.
Link to the article.

The Track & Field Superfan said...

The last time Oregon won the NCAA championship, in 1984, they lost to Washington State both in a dual and at the Pac-10. So it can happen, and you don't want to leave anything to chance. But I'll agree that Lanana wasn't keying up for the MPSF meet.

Back in the 80s, Tennessee used to be the fastest football team in the nation because they allowed track guys to skip spring football. Sam Graddy and Willie Gault were the two best; I had a HS teammate who went to Tennessee specifically because of the track opportunity, and he was a good enough d-back to stay in the NFL for ten years.