USA Track Recognizes Stigler as Athlete of the Week
INDIANAPOLIS – The honors kept rolling in for Kansas’ senior hurdler Michael Stigler Thursday when USA Track & Field named him its Athlete of the Week. The announcement marked the first time Stigler and a Jayhawk runner earned USATF’s weekly award.
Last Friday, Stigler picked up his third-consecutive Texas Relays 400-meter hurdle title in grand fashion as the hurdler posted a school record as well as the world- and American-leading time in the event. His time of 48.44 smashed his own school record by more than half a second and made him just the second athlete in meet history to garner 400-meter hurdle titles in three-straight years. Only 30 other Americans have ever posted faster performances than Stigler’s.
The clocking marked the fastest 400-meter hurdle time run by a collegian during the NCAA season in nearly four years and was the eighth-fastest 400-meter hurdle time ever run in the month of March. Stigler also made conference history with the performance that made him the second-fastest Big 12 athlete in the league’s 18-year lifespan, only .01 seconds behind Baylor’s Bayano Kamani, who ran 48.43 at the 2000 NCAA Championships.
Stigler’s performance broke his own school record of 49.19 set at the NCAA Championships in 2013, as well as the Mike A. Myers stadium and the Texas Relays meet records. The performance was also fractions of a second from moving the three-time All-American among the NCAA’s all-time fastest 400-meter hurdlers. His mark was a mere .03 seconds from making him the No. 10 performer in collegiate history.
Stigler’s time easily moved him to the top of the world rankings for 2015, bettering the previous leader by well over a second. Comparing to recent seasons, the time would have made him the fourth-fastest in the world in 2014 and would have ranked No. 10 in the world in 2013.
Stigler and the rest of his Kansas teammates will journey to Waco, Texas for the Baylor Invitational this Friday, April 3. Action from the Bears’ new facility, Clyde Hart Stadium, will kick off at 11 a.m.
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