NCAA Men’s Sprint And Hurdle Preview: Grant Holloway Tries To Stay Perfect


Last year, Christian Coleman swept the 60m and the 200m at the NCAA indoor championships, while Fred Kerley completely dominated the 400m. Both men have since moved on to the professional ranks, leaving an opening for new stars to emerge at this weekend’s 2018 NCAA Indoor Championships in College Station, Texas. 

While there is some mystery about those events, the men’s 60m hurdles is all about one man — Grant Holloway. The Florida sophomore broke the collegiate record this year and will try to add to his perfect record in NCAA championships. 

Below is a preview of all the men’s sprint and hurdle events. For full 2018 NCAA Indoor Championships event information, check out our coverage page where you can find entries, schedule, and the full list of previews.

Men’s 60m 

Time: Semifinals, Friday 6:05 PM CT; Finals, Saturday 4:30 PM CT

Top Seed: Andre Ewers - Florida State, 6.52

Top Returner: Jaylen Bacon - Arkansas State, 3rd Place

Five men have run under 6.60 this year with five other posting season bests right at exactly 6.60 mark. Ewers of Florida State ran 6.52 in his first meet of the year, but hasn’t broken 6.60 in his next two appearances and finished second to his teammate at the ACC championships. 

The second seed, Jeryl Brazil of UL-Lafayette, also didn’t win his conference meet. The senior, who has a season best of 6.55, false started and was disqualified from the Sun Belt championships. Elijah Hall had a great outdoor campaign where he finished third at the USATF championships in the 200m. He’s put up a great indoor season so far with this opener of 6.60 and a season best of 6.58.  

Men's 60m, Final - Houston's Eli Hall 6.60!

Arkansas State’s Jaylen Bacon is tied for sixth on the NCAA performance list, but is a big meet performer. He finished fourth at the USATF outdoor championships last year and was third in this meet in 2017. In a race of this magnitude, experience will be vital. 

In the team competition, keep an eye on the two runners from Texas Tech: Divine Oduduru and Andrew Hudson. Both men are doubling this weekend for the Red Raiders, who are ranked fourth in FloTrack’s latest team rankings. Georgia and Arkansas, two other teams with team trophy aspirations, have entrants in Kenzo Cotton (Arkansas) and Kendal Williams and Cejhae Greene (Georgia). Williams and Greene enter with marks that put them 11th and 14th, so any points they get will be a bonus for the Bulldogs.   

Men’s 200m 

Time: Semifinals, Friday 7:35 PM CT; Finals, Saturday 5:50 PM CT

Top Seed: Divine Oduduru - Texas Tech, 20.25

Top Returner: Kenzo Cotton - Arkansas, 7th Place

Oduduru is undefeated in his three appearances in the 200m this year. He competed sparingly last year outdoors so this will be his first NCAA championships. Oduduru’s 20.25 mark is a converted 20.18 that the redshirt freshman ran at altitude in Lubbock. Behind Oduduru is a crowded group — there are seven men between 20.45 and 20.56. That group includes Ncincilili Titi (South Carolina), Nick Gray (Ohio State), Andrew Hudson (Texas Tech), Elijah Hall (Houston), Rai Benjamin (USC), Mustaqeem Williams (Tennessee), and Terrance Laird (Penn State). 

Hall, Gray, and Williams all won their respective conference championships in the 200m. Williams’ victory at SECs — where he beat Kenzo Cotton, Jaron Flournoy and Titi — gives him some added momentum heading into these championships. 

WATCH: Divine Oduduru wins Big 12 200m 

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Men's 200m, Round 2 Heat 2 - NCAA Leader Divine Oduduru

But this field is deep. Hudson, Oduduru’s Texas Tech teammate, has run an altitude adjusted 20.49 and beat Oduduru in the 60m at the Big 12 championships. Speaking of the 60m, this race will feature several runners doubling back from the short sprint. Oduduru, Hudson, Hall, Andre Ewers (Florida State), and Cotton (Arkansas) are all scheduled to race both the 60m and 200m. Can any of them pull off the double that Chrisitan Coleman did in 2017?

When it comes to the team race, Texas Tech is expected to finish toward the top of the standings, so Oduduru and Hudson’s performances are critical. Ditto for Benjamin for USC and Cotton of Arkansas.

Men’s 400m 

Time: Semifinals, Friday 6:25 PM CT; Finals, Saturday 4:50 PM CT

Top Seed: Michael Norman - USC, 45.00

Top Returner: Mylik Kerley - Texas A&M, 3rd Place

Six of the eight finalists last year were seniors, leaving the door open for a new crop of quarter milers to get on the podium. Michael Norman comes in with the top mark and will be one of three Trojans in the field (the Trojans fourth man who ran a qualifier, Rai Benjamin, is entered in the 200m, not the 400m). The top two entry times, Norman’s 45.00 and Auburn’s Akeen Bloomfield’s 45.02 both took place at the Clemson Tiger Paw Invitational three weeks ago. The two sophomores have a chance to go head-to-head again this weekend, this time with much higher stakes. 

WATCH: USC goes 1-2-3 in MPSF 400m 

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Men's 400m, Heat 1 - Three USC Men Run Sub-46!

Bloomfield won the SEC title two weeks ago and is in good form. That SEC championship race had its usual quick times across the board with six of the eight finalists set to compete this weekend. Nathon Allen of Auburn finished third in that race behind Bloomfield and Nathan Strother of Tennessee. It was just the second indoor 400m of the season for the redshirt freshman Allen. Last year, he was runner-up to Fred Kerley outdoors and went on to run 44.19 and turn in a fifth place finish at the world championships for Jamaica. Thus his yearly rank of 46.03 is a bit deceiving and its a good bet that he jumps up into the finals.

In the team race, the USC trio will be trying to rack up the points. Norman is expected to score, but the Trojans will also try to get contributions from Ricky Morgan Jr. and Zach Shinnick. Texas A&M (Mylik Kerley and Robert Grant) and Arkansas (Obi Igbokwe and Rhayko Schwartz) have two entrants apiece. 

Men’s 60m Hurdles 

Time: Semifinals, Friday 6:55 PM CT; Finals, Saturday 5:10 PM CT

Top Seed: Grant Holloway - Florida, 7.42

Top Returner: Grant Holloway - Florida, 1st Place

Holloway enters the weekend as perhaps the largest favorite of the entire week. His time of 7.42 is a collegiate record and is tops in the world this year. All indications point to Holloway defending his 2017 title with ease and more post-racing dancing in College Station. 

How much faster can Holloway go? He has been so dominant in all of his appearances this year, turning in one flawless performance after another. When he ran the 7.42 at Clemson he didn’t just take down the collegiate record, he beat Omar McLeod — the best hurdler in the world. With someone like Holloway, you never want to rule anything out. The American record of 7.36 would require another significant improvement, but with Holloway’s season it is possible. 

Behind Holloway is Alabama’s Ruebin Walters. Walters has the second best mark of year, a 7.61 that he ran in the same meet as Holloway’s 7.42. He’s finished second to Holloway at the SEC championships two weeks ago and is in good position to improve upon his fifth place finish from the 2017 Indoor Championships. There’s four other hurdlers with season best marks faster than 7.70 — Jaylan McConico (Illinois State), Chad Zallow (Youngstown State), Antoine Lloyd (Nebraska), and Angelo Gross (Syracuse). Zallow tore through the Horizon League championships winning the 60m, 60m hurdles and 200m. He also brings some big meet experience after competing in a field with professionals at this year’s Millrose Games. 

For the team title, keep track of Gross of Syracuse and his teammate Matt Moore. Syracuse is currently ranked seventh on the FloTrack team rankings and could use some points in this event to complement the truckload of points that distance star Justyn Knight is expected to put up for Syracuse. Georgia, ranked second behind Florida, also has an entrant in Michael Nicholls. His entry time of 7.76 puts him 15th in the entries so it would be a huge boost for the Bulldogs if he can work his way into the final.  

Ben True Victorious In Half Marathon Debut

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Ben True’s first foray into the half marathon went about as well as possible. The 32-year-old, best known for his abilities in the 5000 and 10,000m, used his track speed to outkick Dathan Ritzenhein to win the New York City Half Marathon in 1:02:39, becoming the first American man to win the race. Prior to Sunday, True had never raced longer than 10 miles. But he did have years of experience in shorter distances -- something that was especially useful after the conservative early pace turned the race tactical and put a premium on a fast finish. 

Briana Williams Passes Marion Jones' World Age Group Record in 100


Briana Williams just made history. 

On Saturday at the Bob Hayes Invitational in Jacksonville, Florida, the Oakland Park Northeast (FL) High sophomore broke a 27-year-old record held by Marion Jones in the 100m run, setting a new 15-year-old world age group record with a wind-legal time of 11.13 seconds (+1.7).

After Eight-Month Layoff, Costello Returns To Racing At NYC Half

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By Rich Sands, @sands(c) 2018 Race Results Weekly, all rights reserved

Photo: Liz Costello (third from right, back row) visiting Public School 1 in New York City in advance of the 2018 United Airlines NYC Half.  

NEW YORK (16-Mar) -- When Liz Costello toes the line in Sunday's United Airlines NYC Half it will be her first race in eight months. The Princeton grad had to scrap most of her summer and fall racing plans after her debut marathon left her in a physical and emotional crater.

MSU T&F Grad Assistant Resigns In Protest Of Nassar Case Handling

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Michigan State track and field graduate assistant Kassie Powell resigned from her position on Thursday in protest of the university's handling of the Larry Nassar sex abuse scandal.

Ritz Gears Up For Boston, Sisson Takes On Tough Field: NYC Half Preview

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With the 2018 World Half Marathon Championships scheduled for next weekend and major marathons in Boston and London on tap for April, the spring road racing season is in full swing. 

House Of Run: When A World Record Isn’t A World Record

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On this week’s episode of the House of Run, Jason and Kevin discuss the abundance of records at the NCAA Indoor Championships including Michael Norman’s world record in the 400m, Kendall Ellis and Sydney McLaughlin both running under the 400m American record, Eli Hall’s 60/200m double and the nonsensical tale of why USC’s men’s team won’t hold the 4 x 400m world record.

WATCH: Clarence Munyai Runs 19.69, Smashes South African 200m Record

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Clarence Munyai stunned the track and field world on Friday with a 19.69 clocking in the 200m. The 20-year-old from South African entered with a personal best of 20.10. The mark lopped 0.15 seconds off Wayde Van Niekerk’s South African national record and makes Munyai just the 10th man ever to run under 19.70. 

The Houston Men Might Break 31-Year Power Five Win Streak At NCAA Outdoors

TL2_0798.JPG Workout Wednesday: Inside Houston Sprints' Race Day Routine

The Houston men finished seventh overall in the team standings at the 2018 NCAA Indoor Championships with 26 total points, 20 of which came from Eli Hall's impressive 60/200 sweep. But don't expect the Cougars to be anywhere near the bottom of the top 10 this outdoor season. In fact, the Houston men are legitimate outdoor team title contenders for three reasons.

The New Mexico XC Team Might Score 50 Points At The 2018 NCAA Outdoors

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The New Mexico women have an opportunity to pull off an incredible feat at this year's 2018 Division I NCAA Outdoor Championships. 

Kyron McMaster In The Hurdles, Sang/Goule In The 1500: 49er Classic Preview

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The indoor season hasn’t been over for an entire week and attention has already turned outdoors. This weekend UNC-Charlotte hosts the 49er Classic, a meet that features collegians and professionals all itching to get an early start on their outdoor season.