Top American pole vaulter Sam Kendricks (photo by Joshua McCoy)
Feb. 26, 2014
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BLOG: Rebels To Compete Against Nation's Best
OXFORD, Miss. - The No. 20 nationally ranked Ole Miss men and the Rebel women will travel to College Station, Texas for the 2014 Southeastern Conference Indoor Championships, held this Thursday-Saturday at the Gilliam Indoor Track & Field Stadium on the campus of Texas A&M.
Ole Miss is one of seven ranked SEC men's teams, while the league boasts eight women's teams in the top 25.
"Our men and women are looking forward to coming in here and competing," said second-year head coach Brian O'Neal. "The intensity of the SEC Championships is unparalleled in track and field. The depth and quality of teams that will be here presents a challenge that we haven't seen this season and is what makes the SEC the top track and field conference in the NCAA."
The nation's premier indoor track & field league championship begins at 1 p.m. CT on each of the three days. ESPN3 will stream the meet live during the following times: Friday (1:55 p.m. CT - 6:35 p.m. CT) and Saturday (12:50 p.m. CT - 5:30 p.m. CT). The broadcast talent includes Dwight Stones (play-by-play), Larry Rawson (analyst) and Lewis Johnson (sideline reporter).
The parts of the meet that are not shown on ESPN3 will be streamed live on AggieAthletics.com.
The meet will air as part of a 90-minute show on ESPNU on Monday, March 10, beginning at 6:30 p.m. CT.
NCAA pole vault leader Sam Kendricks highlights the Ole Miss men, who in their most recent team championship finished eighth at the 2013 NCAA Outdoor Championships, their best national finish ever. Kendricks, the reigning NCAA outdoor champ, is the top-ranked American and is 13th in the world with his school-record vault of 18-8.25 at the Don Kirby Elite Invitational on Feb. 14.
Ole Miss should do well in the 60 meters as it boasts the nation's No. 11 sprinter in freshman Jalen Miller (6.62) and the 22nd-ranked man in Mike Granger (6.67).
For the first time in several years, the Rebel distance runners are among the SEC's best, as the league's No. 2 and No. 3 milers are Ole Miss newcomers Sean Tobin (3:59.91) and Daniel Bulmer (4:01.37), respectively. Those two teamed up with freshman Robert Domanic and senior Montez Griffin to give Ole Miss the SEC's second-best distance medley relay this year (9:40.17) at the Armory Collegiate Invitational in New York.
Juniors Robert Semien (60-meter hurdles) and Malcolm Davis (long jump) also rank highly among their NCAA and SEC counterparts.
This will be the first time since 2009 that the SEC indoor high jump champion will not be named Ricky Robertson. He won four straight titles from 2010-13 and has exhausted his indoor eligibility. He will, however, compete for the Rebels one more time this upcoming outdoor season.
The Ole Miss women will unfortunately be without the services of senior Fabia McDonald, who is out with a foot injury. She ranks among the top 25 NCAA athletes in both the pentathlon and long jump this season.
Both the Rebel men and women will look to improve upon last year's SEC indoor finishes of 11th and 12th, respectively.
Below is a listing of the top times and marks by Ole Miss athletes this year.
Ole Miss Athlete, Event, Mark (NCAA Rank, SEC Rank)
Sam Kendricks, pole vault, 18-8.25 (1st, 1st)
Jalen Miller, 60m, 6.62 (11th, 4th)
Phillip Young, triple jump, 52-2.5 (12th, 4th)
Robert Semien, 60m hurdles, 7.81 (19th, 5th)
Mike Granger, 60m, 6.67 (22nd, 8th)
Sean Tobin, mile, 3:59.91 (23rd, 2nd)
DMR (Domanic, Griffin, Tobin, Bulmer), 9:40.17 (26th, 2nd)
Malcolm Davis, long jump, 24-8.5 (29th, 5th)
Daniel Bulmer, mile, 4:01.37 (46th, 3rd)
Fabia McDonald, pentathlon, 3,989 (14th, 7th)
Fabia McDonald, long jump, 20-3.5 (22nd, 9th)
Kierra White, long jump, 20-0.25 (35th, 12th)
Jhorden Hunter, 60m, 7.42 (43rd, 16th)