Another relatively quiet weekend on the track. I'm still waiting for that "break out" weekend when the competition gets HOT. I thought we were going to get there this past weekend as there were some good programs entered in the Florida State Relays. But horrible weather lead to several stoppages, athletes dropping out of many events, and poor conditions keeping most marks under par.
Better weather out here on the West Coast saw some good early season competition at the Stanford and Arizona State Invitationals. Nothing earth shattering, though we did get a couple of nice sprints in Arizona with Marcus Brunson looking like he is returning to form with a 10.12 (+0/0) and Porsha Lucas dashing 11.24 (-0.1).
The best action seemed to come from California preps as several high schoolers really stepped up their games. Reggie Wyatt (La Sierra HS) ran 46.67 in the 400 then came back 40 minutes later to blaze 36.59 in the 300IH! Wyatt sat out last year after transferring schools and looks ready to show everyone that he is still the man to beat. Another awesome double was turned in by middle distance runner Tony Villalva (El Toro HS) who ran 4:15.03/8:59.45 in the 1600/3200. Pole Vaulter Michael Woepse (Mater Dei HS) soared over 16'4" - and he's only a soph! Of course it helps to come from a pole vaulting family, as Michael's dad Greg was an 18' 5" vaulter back in the 1980's and his brothers and sister also vault. With a little luck Michael may approach the family best before he finishes high school.
Now that the preps have gotten things going, perhaps we'll see the same from the collegiate and open athletes. That could happen as soon as this week, as both the Pepsi Florida Relays and the Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays are on tap. Both meets have been known to "turn the heat up" on the season. Texas is loaded with a slew of top collegiate programs including Arkansas, Baylor, Texas, LSU, Stanford, USC and Florida State among others. Florida will have several of the top SEC schools in attendance including South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Clemson, Alabama and Mississippi among others. The Florida meet will also have elite sprinters Dwight Thomas, Derrick Atkins, and Xavier Carter in attendance.
With some good weather and a little luck, perhaps this will be the weekend to talk about.