FAYETTEVILLE – The University of Arkansas men’s and women’s track and field teams are both ranked No. 3 in the March 1 release of the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches’ Association (USTFCCCA) national poll. On the heels of a pair of runner-up performances at the 2011 Southeastern Conference Indoor Championships, the rankings represent season-high positions for both teams.
The Razorback men have steadily climbed the charts during the 2011 indoor season. In the preseason rankings, Arkansas was slotted as the No. 13 team to begin the year. Regionally, the Razorbacks are the top-ranked team on the South Central list. During the course of the season, the men have collected nine NCAA automatic qualifiers marks spread among five student-athletes and two relays.
Arkansas is part of a 1-2-3 SEC control of the top of the rankings with Florida and LSU, respectively. Other conference teams ranked are No. 21 Alabama and No. 24 Mississippi State. Overall, the SEC leads the NCAA and tops the Big 12 and Big Ten in the conference index rankings, as has been the case all season.
The Razorback women move up one from their spot in last week’s rankings and maintain their top-10 position, having been ranked sixth in the preseason poll. In the South Central region, Arkansas holds the top spot, up from its No. 2 ranking last week. Following the conference meet, the women have five NCAA automatic qualifiers spread among three student-athletes and two relays.
Arkansas is one of five women’s teams ranked inside the top 25, along with No. 2 LSU, No. 6 Tennessee, No. 17 Auburn and No. 25 Georgia. Overall, the SEC is the top-rated league in the conference index, ahead of the Big 12 and Pac-10, respectively.
Both Razorback teams return to action Friday, March 4, for the Arkansas Last Chance at the Randal Tyson Track Center. The field competition gets under way at noon (CT) with the shot put while the running events start at 5 p.m. with the 60-meter hurdles. The meet will serve as Arkansas’ final preparation for the NCAA Championships, held March 11-12 in College Station, Texas. For home meet information and meet-day coverage, log on to ArkansasRazorbacks.com.
Download: USTFCCCA rankings_03.01.pdf