NORMAN, Okla. — The Oklahoma Track and Field program will split for the second consecutive week with athletes heading to Arkansas, Ohio and Washington. Both the Oklahoma men and women enter the weekend ranked No. 15 nationally as the majority of the squad will compete in Fayetteville, Ark., in the Tyson Invitational while the distance groups head to Seattle for the Husky Classic. The throws group rounds out the travel parties with the Akron Invitational in Akron, Ohio. All three meets are two-day events kicking off on Friday.
Generally regarded as one of the nation’s best distance tests, the Husky Classic is run on a flat 307-meter Mondo track that has become known as one of the faster indoor tracks in the nation. A strong field will also be available to test the Oklahoma group as the men’s field features 12 nationally ranked teams and the women’s field will have eight nationally ranked squads.
While the Husky Classic is regarded as one of the toughest distance tests, the Tyson Invitational annually produces some of the nation’s best times and marks in the sprints and jumps. This year should be no exception with a new banked Mondo track and a men’s field that will feature 13 ranked teams while the women’s field 14 teams ranked in the nation’s top 25. Many nationally ranked teams will split their runners, sending distance athletes to the Husky Classic and sprinters and jumpers to the Tyson Invitational.
A throws group of eight athletes rounds out the Oklahoma travel plans for the weekend as they head to Akron, Ohio, for the Akron Invitational. The group will take on a field that features five ranked men’s teams and four ranked women’s teams. The throws field will feature a group of ranked athletes including the women’s shot put that has three of the nation’s top eight throwers competing including OU’s Karen Shump at No. 3 and Tia Brooks at No. 8.