DENTON, Texas (6/9/09) For the second straight season, the North Texas track and field team is set to send multiple athletes to the NCAA Championship, which will get underway tomorrow from Fayetteville, Arkansas.
The Mean Green had gone 25 years without having more than one representative at the championship until last season when high jumper Toby Edwards and sprinter Ciara Smith broke the streak. This season North Texas will be sending pole-vaulter Jordan Wehr and the men’s 4X100 relay team (Keyth Talley, Ryan Varner, Byron Washington, C.J. Fowler).
“I feel going into this that both Jordan and the relay team has a shot at the finals,” North Texas head coach Rick Watkins said. “They’re both seeded kind of in the middle so there is definitely a realistic chance at the finals. If you can get to that final day everyone starts anew. These guys are excited but they’re also confident. They don’t want to just be there, they want to win.”
Wehr, a sophomore from Austin, Texas, finished the regular season strong by shattering the school record in the heptathlon at the Sun Belt Championships with a height of 17-06.50. He carried that momentum into the NCAA Regionals where he finished fifth and gained an automatic birth with a height of 16-11.00.
The men’s 4X100 relay team becomes the first relay to reach the NCAA Championships since the foursome of Detrion Woodson, Carlos Yearwood, Tramaine Baker and Jeff Hudson went in 1999. This year’s team finished second at the NCAA Regionals in a time of 39.83 and ran a 39.61 in the prelims, coming up just short of the ’99 team’s school-record (39.50).
Both Wehr (4:30 p.m.) and the relay team (5:15 p.m.) will perform on Wednesday. The finals of both the pole vault and men’s 4X100 will take place on Friday. Live results can be found at ArkansasRazorbacks.com.