Track and field’s top three athletes advance in national competition

 Devin King placed 10th in pole vault with a score of 234-05 at the NCAA Championships held in Eugene, Oregon.
  File Photo/The Lion’s Roar

Three Southeastern athletes qualified to compete in the NCAA Division I Track and Field National Championship. Pole vaulter Devin King, middle distance runner Andre Colebrook and thrower Alex Young represented the university on a national stage in their respected competitions. Track and field Head Coach Sean Brady discussed how he feels about his team going into the competition. 

“We’re ready, we’re excited and I hope that people follow and recognize the accomplishments that we have been able to have,” said Brady. “These three are here today, representing much more than just themselves. They represent their team, which is a really good team. We’ve been nationally ranked most of the year. They’re in it for the right reasons. They’re not just great athletes, but they’re all great people too.” 

Colebrook, King and Young are strong contenders that achieved many awards in their  sport. King accomplished many accolades for his track and field career in 2017 including being named the Southland Field Athlete of the Week. Young, who competed in the throws at this meet, placed 10th in the 2015 NCAA Outdoor Championship in the hammer throw. For both King and Young, this is not the first time they have competed in the NCAA Championship. Andre Colebrook is a first-year competitor but is familiar with the pressures of such meets. Colebrook  previously competed in international meets. 

Brady discusses the training style for the athletes competing in the championship and the coaching style his staff uses to provide the best environment for their athlete’s development. 

“They’re all very, very ferocious competitors and all very different,” said Brady. “Alex is very methodical in his training and planning and likes to have input and control over a lot of what he does in preparation. On the flip side, Andre is laid back and fun and relaxed, and Devin is somewhere in between. He’s very experienced and has great knowledge of his event and knows what he needs to do. We don’t spend a lot of time going over the fine details because I think it just helps him be relaxed if we take care of certain things as coaches and meet their needs as coaches. We try to create a situation for them to be the best Devin, Alex and Andre can be. That’s what’s a little bit unique about our sport. There is no blanket prescription for anything. We just got to find out what works for them and try and create an environment for them to be healthy.”

Brady explains what sets Southeastern athletes apart from others at this meet.

“Everybody that makes it to this meet is special,” said Brady. “There is not anybody here who does not deserve to be here. The process of just getting to this meet is really difficult and tough. There are people here that deserve to be here and they certainly earned their right to be at this meet. What separates the people who are actually going to score and the ones that don’t are just the ones that have prepared and are emotionally ready to be able to compete on the biggest stage. I love to come into this meet because we come in as underdogs. Our guys are not supposed to be here. We’re not the SEC or the Pac 10 or the Big 12. So, any time we get our guys here, it’s really gratifying for me as a coach, and I think for all the Lion nation and followers to be excited about one: just getting here, and two: having a chance for them to compete and do well.”

In this year’s NCAA Division I Track and Field National Championship  Southeastern finished in an eight way tie for the 33rd spot,. Young placed second in throws and King took 10th in pole vault.

Andre Colebrook represented the university competing against colleges from all across America during the NCAA Championships.
File Photo/ The Lion's Roar  

Alex Young threw a school record 241 feet and 8 inches earning him second place in throws. King placed 10th in pole vault with a score of 234-05. 
File Photo/ The Lion's Roar