UGENE, Ore. – A busy day awaits the Seminoles Friday at Historic Hayward Field, where the men finish up competition at the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships and senior Melissa-Maree Farrington gets started with the first four of seven events in the heptathlon.
Farrington leads things off in the 100-meter hurdles at 3:30 p.m. (ET) and will have also completed the high jump and shot put before the four qualifying Seminole men get going.
Graduate transfer Ed’Ricus Williams begins high jump competition at 8 p.m., followed by senior Emmanuel Onyia in the discus (8:05). Seminole junior Montel Never and Armani Wallace take to the runway in the triple jump at 8:40.
Farrington will close out her day with the 200-meter dash at 10:13 p.m.
Here’s an event-by-event look at how the Seminoles stack up in their respective events.
In the midst of a strong final collegiate season – she was 15th at the NCAA Indoor Championships in the pentathlon – she has an opportunity to become FSU’s first first-team All-American in the heptathlon. Carmelia Shivers owns the top finishes among Noles, placing 10th in 1990 and 1991. Farrington’s former teammate and FSU record-holder Grete Sadeiko (5,813 pts.) was 11th last year.
Farrington historically starts strong as the 100-meter hurdles and high jump are her best Day 1 events.
The Challengers: Georgia senior Kendall Williams is the heavy favorite to win her third title in four years, entering with a season-best 6,354 points. That’s well clear of the Arkansas tandem of Taliyah Brooks (6,099) and Payton Stumbaugh (6,023), and Kansas State’s Nina Schultz (6,021), who are the only competitors in the field over 6,000 points this season. Only 177 points separate Farrington from the fifth-best score this season.
How to Watch: Exclusive coverage of the women’s heptathlon, which begins at 3:30 p.m. (ET) will be streamed on ESPN3/WatchESPN. A listing of links can be found here: http://www.ncaa.com/championships/trackfield-outdoor/d1/broadcast-info?cid=NCAATrackField_tw_sf85955340&sf85955340=1
The ACC runner-up, Williams was one of three jumpers perfect through three bars in Lexington, Ky., and has plenty momentum with three wins and two runner-up finishes over his last five meets.
The Challengers: This is one of the tightest fields competitively in any event. The top marks belong to Georgia’s Kennon Laine and South Carolina’s Tye Williams (2.25m/7-4.5) – whom tied Williams at the NCAA East meet – followed by Texas Tech’s Trey Culver (2.24). Still, 10 qualifiers have cleared 2.20 this season and that doesn’t include Kansas State’s Christoff Bryan who was the 2016 NCAA runner-up at 2.22.
How to Watch: Exclusive coverage of the men’s high jump begins at 7:50 p.m. (ET) will be streamed on ESPN3/WatchESPN at http://www.espn.com/watch/_/id/3093757/ncaa-track–field-outdoor-championships-mens-high-jump-final
Following an additional week of preparation and healing, he hopes to lock into the form which led him to back-to-back top marks of 59.62m (195-7) and his PB (60.34m) at Stanford and Penn Relays just a little over a month ago.
The Challengers: The NCAA leader is Ole Miss’ Brian Williams (65.13/213-8), followed by Kansas’ Mitchell Cooper (63.98/209-11) and Cincinnati’s Macklin Tudor (63.54/208-5). Defending champion Nicholas Percy of Nebraska ranks fourth this year (62.91/206-4)
How to Watch: Exclusive coverage of the men’s discus will begin at 7:55 p.m. (ET) with a live stream on ESPN3/WatchESPN at http://www.espn.com/watch/_/id/3093756/ncaa-track–field-outdoor-championships-mens-discus-throw-final
Wallace owns the all-conditions No. 11 mark in the field (16.32m/53-6.5), which he set in his ACC Championship victory. Nevers is No. 17 overall on the strength of his ACC runner-up performance (15.99/52-5.5). Those rankings, however, change to Nos. 7 and 9, respectively, when you remove the wind-aided marks from the qualifying field of 24.
Both jumpers have shown a knack for stepping up against big-time competition, as evidenced by Wallace’s sweep of the horizontal jumps at the ACC Championships and Nevers’ eighth-place triple jump finish at the NCAA Indoor Championships.
The Challengers: Though he ranks No. 2 with an all-conditions best of 16.70m (54-9.5), Florida’s KeAndre Bates was the 2016 runner-up and the only returning scorer from last year. The nation’s top mark belongs to USC’s Eric Sloan (16.92/55-6.25), but there are five others who marks of 16.43 or better this season including Baylor’s Felix Obi and Virginia’s Jordan Scott.
How to Watch: Exclusive coverage of the men’s triple jump begins at 8:30 p.m. (ET) with a live stream on ESPN3/WatchESPN at http://www.espn.com/watch/_/id/3093752/ncaa-track–field-outdoor-championships-mens-triple-jump-trials–flight-2–final