FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Arkansas freshman Nkosinza Balumbu ("CO" -sins-"AH" "BAH" – lum- "BOO") has been named the Southeastern Conference Field Athlete of the Week it was announced by the league office on Thursday.
Balumbu was the top collegiate finisher in the triple jump at last weekend’s Razorback Invitational in Fayetteville. The Union City, Calif., product finished second overall in the competitive field of 15 athletes, trailing only former collegiate great and professional jumper Leevan Sands. Balumbu recorded an NCAA provisional qualifying jump of 52-2.75 in only his second collegiate meet. His mark is the second-best triple jump in the country this indoor season. Balumbu is ranked third nationally in the latest Trackwire triple jump rankings.
“Nkosinza is off to a great start,” Arkansas field events coach Dick Booth said. “We have been happy with his progress and we are hoping this is a sign of things to come. When you are the first athlete of the week of the season in the nation’s best track and field conference, expectations are going to mount. It will be exciting to watch how he responds to those expectations. My guess is that he will continue to work hard and respond favorably.”
Balumbu and the majority of the Razorback track and field squad will take the weekend off before heading to the New Balance Collegiate Invitational in New York City on Feb. 3-4. Senior Said Ahmed will compete in the 1,000 meters this weekend at the Boston Indoor Games in his hometown. Ahmed will join former Razorbacks Alistair Cragg and Daniel Lincoln in the two-day meet. Cragg and Lincoln will compete in the two-mile run.
Arkansas is ranked second nationally this week in the Trackwire poll after opening the indoor season ranked at the top position in the Jan. 13 listing. Florida State is ranked No. 1 in this week’s poll with 59 points followed by Arkansas (49 points), Wisconsin (47 points), Texas (39 points) and LSU (29 points).