UW Health Sports Medicine 

A look at the men's NCAA start lists

Beth_Zach_Twilight_10_Blog.jpgThe start lists for this week's 2010 NCAA Outdoor Championships Preliminary Round have been posted. Check out the complete start lists: Men | Women

Some quick observations from my first glance over the men's lists...
- James Groce and Kyle Jefferson will both race in heat 4 of the men's 400 meters first round, with Jefferson getting a prime draw in lane 5. The top three finishers from each section automatically advance to the quarterfinals Friday.

- Luke Rucks has the fastest seed time of the entries in his section (heat 4) of the men's 800 meters Thursday. Zach Beth will race in heat 5 against the No. 5 overall seed for the meet and defending NCAA champion Andrew Wheating of Oregon. The top three from each section automatically advance to the quarterfinals Friday.

- Wheating will be running his second race of the day, however, since he'll match up against UW's Jack Bolas in the first heat of the men's 1,500 meters first round. Wheating is the top seed in the 1,500. Also in Bolas' section is Minnesota's Ben Blankenship, who finished third to Bolas and teammate Craig Miller at the Big Ten championships.

- Miller is the second-fastest qualifier in heat 3 of the 1,500, with his best competition (on paper) Oregon junior A.J. Acosta, who is the No. 3 overall seed in the event. The top five in each heat of the 1,500 advance to Saturday's quarterfinal.

- Senior Ryan Gasper is seeded second-fastest in his section of the 3,000-meter steeplechase (heat 2) Friday and is one of three in the heat to break the 8:45.00 mark this season. He will be racing directly for a spot in Eugene, as the top three finishers in each heat and the next three fastest overall times (12 total) advance to the NCAA championships. Sophomore Phil Thomas also will run in heat 2.

- Redshirt freshman Maverick Darling is seeded seventh-fastest in heat 2 of the men's 5,000 meters Saturday, and he will be battling to finish among the top five in his section to advance to Eugene.

- The men's 10,000 meters is borderline ridiculous. The race will consist of one heat, with all 48 athletes on the track at the same time. Good luck to the lap counters for this one. Freshman Mohammed Ahmed, redshirt freshman Elliot Krause and junior Landon Peacock will race to be among the top 12 to earn a spot in the final in Eugene.

- Senior Nate Larkin is familiar with his competition in the final heat of the men's 110-meter hurdles first round Friday. Illinois' Andrew Riley, to whom Larkin ran runner-up at the Big Ten championships both indoors and outdoors, also races in his section. The top three in each heat automatically advance to the quarterfinals Saturday.

- The Badgers' 4x100-meter relay has its work cut out for it Saturday. UW drew lane two in the opening section of the race and is seeded fourth-fastest in the heat. No. 2 overall seed Baylor (39.18) will be the team to beat for the Badgers (40.15), who need to be among the top three in their heat or one of the next three fastest times to advance to Eugene.

- Wisconsin also faces off against Baylor in the 4x400 relay later in the day Saturday, as the Badgers drew lane 8 for the final section of the event. They own the slowest seed time in their heat at 3:09.59, with Baylor's 3:02.70 the class of the section and ranked No. 2 overall coming into the weekend.