RCW: Inside Track & Field 3.24
Get a quick look inside your favorite Kansas Jayhawk programs each week with Rock Chalk Weekly’s Inside Sports pages. Notable statistics, quick hits and the top social media posts get every Jayhawk fan up-to-speed and ready for another week of thrilling competition.
Number BY THE NUMBERS
The Jayhawk men’s team enters the Big 12 Championship meet ranked No. 6 in the latest national poll. It marks the highest regular-season ranking for the Kansas men’s squad – for both the indoor or outdoor seasons – since the current rankings system began in 2008.
Notes QUICK HITS
- This weekend, the Jayhawks will travel to Iowa State’s Lied Recreation Center for the Big 12 Indoor Championship, which is hosting the league meet for the ninth time and seventh time since 2008.
- The Kansas men enter the weekend boasting 27 team conference championships dating back to 1922, with the most recent coming in 1983. The run encompassed eight-consecutive team championships from 1952-59, including 17 championships in a 22-year span from 1950-71. The KU men’s highest finish in the Big 12 Conference was sixth place in 2006 and 2013.
- The Jayhawks enjoyed one final Big 12 Championship tune-up last weekend as KU contingents competed at the Arkansas Qualifier and Alex Wilson Invitational. The Jayhawk women’s distance medley relay posted a new program best and was later joined by the men’s 4×400-meter relay team, which broke the school record for the second time in three weeks.
- The distance medley relay team comprised of sophomores Riley Cooney and Nicole Montgomery, as well as seniors Whitney Adams and Hannah Richardson, completed the 4,000-meter race in 11:01.85, more than six seconds faster than any KU team before it.
- The DMR time broke the old school record, previously set at 11:07.96 by the KU team at the 2010 Alex Wilson Invitational. It also moved Kansas to No. 9 on the most recent NCAA distance medley rankings for 2017, putting KU in a solid position to qualify for the national championship meet in three weeks.
- The men’s 4×400-meter relay squad of Ivan Henry, Tre Daniels, Jaron Hartley and Strymar Livingston passed the baton around in a new school-record time of 3:05.57, coming in as the runner-up to the squad out of Alabama. The KU team shaved more than two seconds off its previous record mark and moved up to No. 7 on the latest NCAA DI chart.
- At the Arkansas Qualifier on Friday, KU pole vaulters Nick Maestretti and Hussain Al Hizam turned in career-best vaults to put themselves in prime position to qualify for the NCAA Indoor Championships. Maestretti and Al Hizam both got over 5.46 meters (17-11) and claimed the top-two collegiate finishes in the event. The clearances moved both Jayhawks into the school’s all-time top-10 indoor list and to No. 11 on the most recent NCAA pole vault rankings.
- The Jayhawk men now feature five pole vaulters who rank inside the top-15 in the NCAA this season. Those ranked 16th or better after Feb. 26 will qualify for the national championship meet to be hosted by Texas A&M March 10-11 inside Gilliam Indoor Track.
- Senior Sydney Conley returned to the long jump runway after a 13-month hiatus and appeared to show little signs of rust at the Arkansas Qualifier. The Fayetteville native posted a mark of 6.22 meters (20-5) on her final jump of the afternoon, good enough to earn her a runner-up finish and only three inches shy of her indoor personal best in the event. The performance inserted her name at No. 3 on the Big 12 chart with the league meet looming this week.
- For the third-consecutive week, freshman Jedah Caldwell managed to shave time off her season-best 200-meter clocking as she continued her climb up the national chart. The Chanhassen, Minnesota product completed her lap in 23.59 to earn her second collegiate win in the event and rewrite her own Kansas freshman record. Caldwell’s run moved her into the top-30 of the latest collegiate rankings and has been topped by only three other NCAA DI freshmen in 2017.