Marco Arop, Who Didn't Qualify For NCAAs, Wins Pan Am 800m Gold

Just two days after Carlos Villarreal won Pan American 1500m gold after missing the NCAA final in June, a similar moment of redemption happened for another NCAA star on Saturday as Mississippi State’s Marco Arop won men’s 800m gold in Lima, Peru, in a 1:44.25 PB.

The 20-year-old Canadian failed to advance to the NCAA Outdoor Championships out of the East Preliminary round back in May, but he was better than ever in the Peruvian capital today as he kicked past Puerto Rico’s Wesley Vazquez in the final 100m while lowering his personal best by a full second.

Vazquez took the silver medal in 1:44.48.

While one NCAA star was having a career day, another collegiate standout from this past season, two-time NCAA champion Bryce Hoppel, surprisingly was off his game on Saturday. 

The 21-year-old, who went undefeated in the collegiate season and finished third two weeks ago at the 2019 U.S. Outdoor Championships, could only manage fourth place in 1:47.48. The former Kansas runner was in position to unleash his kick and challenge for the lead in the last lap, but he faded in the final 200m and ultimately finished more than two seconds behind bronze medal winner Ryan Sanchez of Puerto Rico (1:45.19).

Before today, Hoppel had not finished outside of the top three in a race all season. Fortunately, he still has a month and a half to get reset for the World Championships in Doha.

Arop finished second behind Hoppel back in March at the 2019 NCAA Indoor Championships.

Vazquez took the pace out honest through 400m in 49.74 and the Puerto Rican national record holder held the lead all the way to 700 meters. But he couldn’t shake Arop and the burden of pace-setting much of the race likely cost him the gold.

Like Hoppel, Arop's season will continue in Doha as he took second at the Canadian Championships two weeks back. His time today secured his Olympic standard for 2020 and broke both the Pan American Games and Mississippi State records.

House Of Run: Why There Should Be One Championship Schedule

Jason and Kevin lament the World Championships schedule (again) that won’t allow for cool doubles, discuss whether or not Mo Farah will race the 10,000m in Doha, preview this weekend’s meet in Paris, and reflect on their first 500 episodes.

Report: Christian Coleman May Face Suspension After Missed Drug Tests

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Christian Coleman may be facing a two-year suspension after reportedly missing three drug tests.

Jakob Ingebrigtsen Goes For First Diamond League Win | Paris DL Preview

Saturday's Paris Diamond League meet is the final "regular season" event before the Diamond League finals begin. While the specter of the World Championships looms, the fields assembled this weekend will be looking for a good race before that final push to Doha. 

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