Tide poised for successful season after opening weekendBy CW Staff | 01/22/2010 8:58am
The Alabama track and field team started off its season at the Kentucky Invitational in Lexington, Ky., last weekend, earning two NCAA provisional qualifying marks. The Tide’s performance was sparked by senior Ray Jadusingh, who ran the seventh-best 60 meter time in school history.
“Our senior sprinter, Ray Jadusingh, did a really good job running his personal best in preliminaries and an outstanding job setting the seventh fastest time in school history and the second fastest in the country with a 6.69,” head coach Harvey Glance said.
The Tide suffered a setback when the 40x400 meter relay team dropped the baton and did not finish the race, despite showing promise earlier in the race.
“I think our 4x400 team should have qualified but there was a stick drop,” Glance said. “It’s just all part of track and field. It is all part of competition, but it did show that we have potential and can run right with them.”
Glance said he was impressed with his team’s performance in their first meet of the year.
“To come out of this meet with a couple of personal bests and two NCAA provisional qualifying marks is very promising,” he said.
This year’s team will lean on its distance runners, many of whom helped the Tide’s cross country team win its second straight SEC championship in the fall.
“Certainly we will lean on the likes of our veterans All-American Tyson David and Emanuel Bor,” Glance said. “They are two of the top distance runners in the nation.”
“They are SEC champions, and they know how to compete.”
Glance plans to give his distance runners plenty of rest throughout the season in order to keep them fresh.
“We are always careful about our distance guys,” Glance said. “They are coming off of a full championship season; we have to be careful that we don’t burn them out for the indoor and the outdoor seasons.”
Similar to previous years, the Tide is preparing to compete with some of the nation’s elite for the SEC championship.
“I think a lot of people do not realize the strength of our conference,” Glance said. “There are 11 teams in our conference and they all might finish in the top 25 in the country.”
Despite the stiff competition, Glance still expects the Tide to finish the season as one of the top teams in the conference as well as the nation.
“Our goal this year is to try to be in the upper half of our conference, or at least the middle, because if you can do that then you are certainly a great program,” he said.
The Tide will travel to Arkansas for the Razorback Invitational this weekend, where Glance said he hopes his team will continue to improve and rise to their full potential.
“On paper we look real good, but we still need to go out there and execute and get it done when it really counts,” Glance said. “In my 19 years as a head coach, this is probably the best team we have ever seen.”