A ramshackle NCAA Indoor day two preview
Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
-From William Butler Yeats’ “The Second Coming”
With Citius Mag founder, editor-in-chief, and supreme puppetmaster Chris Chavez on a weekend-long sabbatical, we — the schlubs of the Citius staff — are struggling to hold things together. Birthdays are fast approaching. Cross-continental trips in the name of love abound. And general deficiencies of character and skill are presenting themselves in the most untimely of fashions.
But the world cries out for more track & field content, so we will hobble onward, and with our death rattle, croak something out just shy of “pithy,” and off-center of “accurate.”
At 4:00pm CST, we’ll fire up both of my virus-riddled Dell laptop computers, and live tweet the second and final day of action from College Station, Texas. Will the Oregon women have a big showing, and pry the team title out of current leader Georgia’s hands? Will Cheserek win two more individual events? (He’s already the winningest individual in NCAA track history.) Will the other storylines we’ve hyped up also come to fruition? Tune into our Twitter page (@CitiusMag) to find out, instead of suffering through another day of ESPN 3 broadcasting.
As you absorb the happenings from the meet, one tweet at a time, just keep the following things in mind:
- In the women’s mile, top- and second-ranked Kaela Edwards and Elinor Purrier both advanced to the final comfortably. But the race shouldn’t be a duel between them. Lesser seeded Therese Haiss and Karisa Nelson, among others, looked strong in the prelims and should keep things interesting.
- On paper, Cheserek should take the men’s mile without too much concern. But as many of my youth basketball coaches would say to my clearly inferior teams, “that’s why they play the game.” Josh Thompson and Ben Saarel look best-poised to upset King Ches, but it’s a long shot of an upset.
- In the women’s sprints, we’ll miss out on another Deajah Stevens crack at an American Record in the 200m, following her super lame DQ yesterday, but she can redeem herself in the 60m, along with teammates Ariana Washington and Hannah Cunliffe, who are slated to run both short sprints today. Oregon’s team title hopes depend on a strong showing from these women, as Georgia currently holds a big lead, thanks to their multi- and field-eventers.
- Jazmine Fray should win the women’s 800m, as she’s the clear class of the field. On the men’s side, there isn’t quite as dominant a presence, and given how physical yesterday’s prelims were, really anything can happen. Expect lots of jostling and contact.
- Both of yesterday’s 5,000m champions return to the track for the 3,000m today, and considering how strong both Cheserek and Karisa Schweizer looked over 25 laps, it’s not out of line to suggest they’ll win this one too. Challenging Ches most will be Justyn Knight and Marc Scott. And on the women’s side, DMR hero Dani Jones, along with Elise Cranny and Katie Rainsberger will keep things honest for Schweizer.
- The fastest heat of the women’s 4x400m relay should be insanely good, and could even determine who wins the meet outright. USC, A&M, Oregon, and Alabama. That’s all.
- After the meet, don’t miss the nationally televised (on ABC) Spurs vs. Warriors game, which will probably be a tremendous letdown for the casual fan. For the Warriors, Thompson, Durant, Iguodala, Curry, and Green are all out. And the Spurs aren’t suiting up Leonard, Aldridge, Parker, or Murray. As a San Antonio-native who enjoys watching unheralded role players stepping up, I’m just about vomiting in anticipation!