FORT SMITH, Ark. – Former Arkansas sprinter and 13-time All-American Neil Braddy was inducted into the Fort Smith Southside High School Hall of Fame on the evening of Friday, Sept. 18.
The recent Arkansas graduate, only 24 years old, is the youngest member to be inducted into the Rebels Hall of Fame.
“Neil Braddy is a local talent that deserves celebration,” said head coach Chris Bucknam. “He had success on all fronts from Southside high school all the way to the NCAA championships. It was a rewarding experience as a staff helping him develop into an SEC champion, NCAA champion, Arkansas record-holder, NCAA record-holder, and 13-time All-American. Braddy is one of the most celebrated Razorbacks from our home state of Arkansas. We are grateful and proud of his efforts here at the University of Arkansas.”
As a Razorback Braddy excelled individually in the 400-meter dash lending to his selection for their extremely competitive 4×400-meter relay team. The Northwest Arkansas native finished in the top three as a member of the 4×400-meter relay line-up at the 2011 NCAA Indoor National Championships in his first competition season donning cardinal red and white. It was only just the beginning for the true freshman from Fort Smith.
The next couple of years saw Arkansas exert its dominance on the rest of the country in 4×400-meter relay at the indoor national meet. With Braddy in tow, the Razorbacks picked up back to back national titles in the indoor 4×400-meter relay in 2012 and 2013 the latter assisting the program to collect their 41st national title. The 2013 relay team of Marek Niit, Braddy, Caleb Cross and Akheem Gauntlett broke the collegiate record previously held by Florida with their time of 3:03.50. The team remains as the second best performers in NCAA history.
“Neil had an immediate impact on our program,” said assistant coach Doug Case. “He got better and better every year which accumulated in him being a two-time national champion. He contributed to six SEC team titles and has his name on the Arkansas top 10 list 17 times. He did the job academically as well and was a team leader.”
In four years of competition for Arkansas Braddy attended and scored in all eight indoor and outdoor national championships capping his career with perfect post-season attendance.
One of the most decorated athletes to represent the Razorbacks, Braddy’s time with the program is forever etched in school and collegiate history.
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