Feb. 7, 2006
Tallahassee, Fla. – If you were a little upset because you might miss the No. 1-ranked Florida State men’s track and field team win their first national title, your day just got better.
CBS Television and the NCAA announced today (Tuesday, February 7) that the 2006 NCAA Division I Men’s and Women’s Outdoor Track and Field Championships, will aire live for two and a half hours on the final day of competition (June 10). The meet takes place in Sacramento, Calif., from June 7-10 at the A.G. Spanos Sports Complex on the campus of California State University, Sacramento.
The men’s team is picked to beat out perennial national champion Arkansas and bring home the program’s first title. Predicted individual champions include 2005 NCAA Outdoor 100m Champion Walter Dix (Coral Springs, Fla./Coral Springs), the nation’s top triple jumper and six-time All-American Rafeeq Curry (Miami, Fla./ACE Academy) and 2006 Rhodes Scholar redshirt junior Garrett Johnson (Tampa, Fla./Tampa Baptist Academy).
In the latest Trackwire 25 poll, Texas has joined FSU in the top spot with both teams projected to score 46 points. Fellow league school Virginia Tech is tied for 11th while rival Florida sits at No. 13. In the first-ever USTFCCCA coaches poll, the Seminoles are rated third behind Arkansas and Texas.
Trackwire 25 – t1. Florida State, 46; t1. Texas, 46; 3. Wisconsin, 45; 4. Arkansas, 43; 5. LSU, 39; 6. Tennessee, 26; 7. Arizona, 25; 8. Kansas, 24; 9. Nebraska, 23; 10. Michigan, 19; t11. Virginia Tech, 18; t11. Texas A&M, 18; 13. Florida, 17; 14. Oregon, 14; t15. TCU, 12; t15. South Carolina, 12; t15. USC, 12; t15. Notre Dame, 12; t19. Baylor, 11; t19. Texas Tech, 11; t19. Alabama, 11; t19. Indiana, 11; 23. BYU, 10; t24. Auburn, 9; t24. Illinois, 9; t24. UCLA, 9.
The Dandy Dozen rankings have six Seminole men and two FSU women in the top 12 in the nation in their respective events. Curry is arguably the best all-around jumper in the country, holding the top spot in the triple and eleventh in the long jump. Dix is number two in the 200m and fifth in the 60m, after opening his season at the Pepsi Invitational.
Junior transfer Greg Bolden (Morrow, Ga./Albany State), sophomore All-American Ricardo Chambers (Palm Beach Gardens, Fla./Dwyer) and Garrett Johnson are tabbed as the second best in the 60m dash, 400m dash and shot put, respectively. Bolden moved up from fourth after an impressive performance at the Pepsi Invitational in Gainesville while Chambers remained second to four-time national champion LSU’s Kelly Willie. Johnson has posted two automatic qualifying marks in as many attempts in his final season before heading overseas to study at Oxford.
Sophomore ACC Indoor and Outdoor Performer of the Year Tom Lancashire (Bolton, England/Turton), who opens up his season at the Tyson Invitational this week, is rated eleventh in the mile run, after running a four-minute mile and finishing fifth at last season’s national championships.
On the women’s side, All-Americans Natalie Hughes (Grand Junction, Colo./Palisade) and Lacy Janson (Sarasota, Fla./Cardinal Mooney) remain among the best in the nation in the mile run and the pole vault, respectively. Hughes is tenth overall, despite not running an indoor mile since the 2004 NCAA Indoor Championships where she finished in an FSU-school record of fifth-place. Janson, who has qualified for nationals in every competition this season, is rated the third-best pole vaulter in the nation. She is tied for the second-highest vault this year, clearing the bar at 13’11.25″ (4.25m) on two occasions.
Both teams return to action at the Tyson Invitational in Fayetteville, Ark., on Friday and Saturday, February 10-11. The meet takes place at the site of the 2006 NCAA Indoor Track and Field National Championships.