Jan. 17, 2014
Heat Sheets | Live Results
MADISON, Wis.-- The Wisconsin men's and women's track and field teams open the 2014 indoor season at home this weekend by hosting a pair of meets at the Camp Randall Memorial Sports Center (The Shell).
Wisconsin will host the Badger Indoor Open on Friday, where field events will begin at 3 p.m. (CT) and running events will start at 5 p.m. On Saturday, the Badgers will compete in a dual meet against Missouri, where field events are scheduled to start at 10:30 a.m. with running events slated for 11 a.m. Admission to both meets are free.
Competing in dual meets is a relatively new practice for Wisconsin, but one that Director of Track & Field and Cross Country Mick Byrne feels is increasing in popularity and importance nationwide because they are easier for fans to keep score, there is a definitive winner and loser, and the meets are drastically shorter in length.
"It's a concept that is growing throughout the country and you are going to see more and more of it," Byrne said. "I'm excited about that, it's the way our sport is going with short, scored, two hour meets. At the end of the day there is a team score and somebody will win the meet. People can relate to that, as opposed to a straight invitational meet where nobody wins but people win individual events.
It is not as exciting as an overall team event. If you have two or three teams the meets are a lot shorter, you can get people to come out on Saturday afternoon or Friday night for a two hour meet. It is difficult to get people to sit in the stands for six or seven hour meets. It is the way forward in terms of marketing our sport and to get people excited about it."
The men's squad, coming off an impressive 2013 season in which the team won the Big Ten indoor championships, finished third at the NCAA indoor meet, and placed in the top 15 at the NCAA outdoor championships, come into the 2014 indoor season ranked fourth in the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) preseason rankings.
Wisconsin returns five first-team indoor All-Americans from last year, including senior Japheth Cato and junior Zach Ziemek in the heptathlon, junior Austin Mudd in the mile, senior Mohammed Ahmed in the 5000 meters and senior Danny Block in the shot put.
On the women's side, the Badgers return Deanna Latham, the school record holder in the 60-meter hurdles, and Kelsey Card, the school record holder in the shot put.
As with each of the Badgers' home meets, live results from this weekend will be available at UWBadgers.com.