Big 12 student-athletes continue to excel this track & field season leading to an unprecedented naming of tri-athletes of the week for the second time this year. Michael Stigler (Kansas), Ryan Crouser (Texas) and Kennedy Kithuka (Texas Tech) earned male tri-athlete of the week honors after impressive results in each individual’s events. Kansas’ Sydney Conley earned female athlete of the week with the nation’s third-best long jump mark this season.
Big 12 Outdoor Track & Field Tri-Male Athletes of the Week
Michael Stigler, Kansas, Jr., Canyon, Texas
Stigler turned in a season-best and an NCAA-leading time en route to a win at the Kansas Relays last weekend. The Canyon, Texas, native clocked in at 49.35 in the event final to beat the rest of the field by nearly three seconds. Stigler’s time was not only the fastest by a collegian at the Kansas Relays since 1981, but is the best 400-meter hurdle mark in the NCAA and the fifth-fastest time in the world this year.
Stigler also helped the Jayhawks’ 4x100-meter hurdle team to the event victory at KU’s home meet. Running the third leg, Kansas posted a season-best 40.06 in the prelims before taking the event title in finals. KU’s time is 14th in the NCAA West Region rankings and fourth in the Big 12 in 2014.
Ryan Crouser, Texas, Jr., Boring, Ore.
Crouser won the discus (193-2/58.88m) and was less than two inches from eclipsing his own school record when he captured the shot-put title at Saturday’s Michael Johnson Dr Pepper Classic. Crouser won with a toss of 69 feet, 8 1/4 inches (21.24m), the second-best shot-put performance in school history and a mark that is No. 2 on the 2014 world performance list. His UT-record toss of 69-9 1/2 (21.27m) at the Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays is No. 1. Crouser won his 11th-straight shot-put competition.
Kennedy Kithuka, Texas Tech, Sr., Thika, Kenya
Kithuka broke a seven-year-old school record in the 5,000-meter run and ascended to the top of the NCAA Division I performance list with a dominant performance at the annual Mt. SAC Relays in Walnut, Calif., over the weekend. Kithuka pulled ahead of the field at the 1,600-meter mark, and shattered the school record by 14 seconds, crossing the finish line in 13 minutes 26.98 seconds – a full six seconds ahead of Trevor Dunbar of Oregon in second.
Big 12 Outdoor Track & Field Female Athlete of the Week
Sydney Conley, Kansas, So., Fayetteville, Ark.
Conley turned in the top long jump of her career as she picked up the event victory at the Kansas Relays last weekend. She hit a top mark of 6.50 meters (21’4”) to earn the win and shoot herself up the national ranks. The Fayetteville, Ark., native’s career-best jump is the third-best in the NCAA this year and the No. 1 mark by a Big 12 student-athlete.
Conley also ran the anchor leg for the victorious KU women’s 4x100-meter relay team which picked up its third-consecutive Kansas Relays 4x100-meter title with a winning time of 45.23 after also posting the top time in prelims at 44.77.
2014 Big 12 Outdoor Track & Field Athletes of the Week
|March 26||Trayvon Bromell, Baylor, Fr.||Ese Okoro, Iowa State, Sr.|
|Liz Herrs, Oklahoma, So.|
|Le’Tristan Pledger, Texas Tech, So.|
|April 2||Trayvon Bromell, Baylor, Fr.||Lindsay Vollmer, Kansas, Jr.|
|April 9||Reinis Kregers, K-State, So.||Marielle Hall, Texas, Sr.|
|April 16||Carlos Rodriguez, K-State, Sr.||Courtney Okolo, Texas, So.|
|April 23||Michael Stigler, Kansas, Jr.||Sydney Conley, Kansas, So.|
|Ryan Crouser, Texas, Jr.|
|Kennedy Kithuka, Texas Tech, Sr.|