UC will add men's indoor track & field in 2013-14|
March 6, 2013
Men's indoor track and field will be formerly added as an intercollegiate program at the University of Cincinnati in time for the 2013-14 season, as announced by director of athletics Whit Babcock today. It will become UC's 19th intercollegiate athletics program.
"While many athletic departments are scaling back, we want to be aggressive in our approach to comprehensively compete at the highest levels nationally," said Babcock. "Our men's outdoor track and field and cross country program is in place and successful. Adding the indoor team was relatively easy to do and best leveraged what we already have in place."
Men's indoor track and field was once part of the sports programs lineup at UC but was discontinued following the 1998 season. UC did continue to field an outdoor team in the intervening years and members of that outdoor team have competed in limited number of indoor meets as permitted by NCAA rule. This past season, pole vaulter Josh Dangel was ranked 51st in the nation indoors with a 17' 1" mark recorded in a dual meet with Miami University, according to ranking compiled by the U.S Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCA). Marquis Brookins was ranked 78th in the long jump (24' 0.75") and Dailyn Moore was 95th in the 60-meters hurdles (8.05) on the USTFCCA lists as well. Additionally, Terence Somerville has one of the top 50 times in the world this year (7.69) in the 60-meters hurdles, as listed by the international governing body.
The men's indoor and outdoor track and field teams will be led by current assistant coach Kris Mack, who is slated to elevate to head coach following the retirement of Bill Schnier after this season is completed.
"In a time where men's programs are being dropped, Whit Babcock and UC will be one of kind with the addition of men's indoor track and field," said Mack. "I am truly thankful for the efforts that went into returning the men's indoor team.
"With the addition of men's indoor track and field, we will be providing more opportunities for our male student-athletes to be conference champions, academic All-Americans and participants at the NCAA indoor championships. This will be great for our recruiting efforts as well, allowing us to continue to bring in some of the best talent, not only in Ohio but nationally."
The addition of men's indoor track and field will also provide an opportunity for dual-sport student-athletes at UC. Football head coach Tommy Tuberville expressed interest in football student-athletes taking part on the men's track and field teams.
"I was very excited to hear the news about the men's indoor track and field team," Tuberville said. "One of the things our team is founded on is speed. Our skill players will have an opportunity to improve their speed and mechanics while working in a competitive setting which is going to be a great advantage to us in the future."