Jessica Cousins left more than just a stamp on Arkansas Razorback women’s track and field and Arkansas athletics as a whole. A well-rounded student-athlete, she excelled in the classroom and in competition. She received her bachelor’s degree in sociology in May 2007.
While competing for Lance Harter’s squads, Cousins was a four-time All-American. She earned accolades for the 2007 indoor and outdoor 400 meters, for the 2006 outdoor 4×400-meter relay and the 2007 indoor 4×400-meter relay.
She remains as Arkansas’ school record holder in the indoor 400 meters (52.60, 2007 NCAA Indoor Championships) and the outdoor 400 meters (51.92, 2007 NCAA Outdoor Regional Championships).
She also ran on the school record indoor 4×400-meter relay (3:33.67; 2006 Iowa State Last Chance) and the school record outdoor 4×400-meter relay (3:28.78; 2006 NCAA Outdoor Championships). The outdoor quartet earned a bronze finish at the NCAA Championships en route to setting the school record.
In the open 400 meters, she earned a fifth-place finish at the 2007 NCAA Indoor Championships and a fourth-place finish at the 2007 NCAA Outdoor Championships. She was also the 2007 NCAA Mideast Regional Champion with a winning time of 51.92, also her collegiate personal best.
At the Southeastern Conference level, she was the 2007 SEC Indoor 400-meter runner-up with a time of 52.60, also her personal best. She was also the 2007 SEC Outdoor 400-meter runner-up with her clocking of 52.06.
She holds the top four indoor 400-meter times in school history with times of 52.60, 72.79, 52.95 and 53.04. In dominating fashion, she also holds the top five outdoor 400-meter marks in school history with clockings of 51.92, 51.96, 52.06, 52.10 and 52.31.
At the 2008 U.S. Olympic Trials, while continuing to train with Arkansas sprints coach Lonnie Greene, Cousins clocked 400-meter times of 52.63 (quarterfinals) and 52.64 (semifinals).
Cousins still lives and trains in Fayetteville and served as a graduate assistant in the Razorback athletic academic services center until summer 2008.
The University of Arkansas’ Athletic Department recognizes its heritage and the countless contributions made by African-American student-athletes in all 19 of its varsity sports. The Razorbacks are proud to celebrate this great tradition and recognize some of the inspiring pioneers, great student-athletes and outstanding role models that have worn a Razorback uniform as a part of Black History Month.