June 22, 2011


Texas A&M sprinters Jessica Beard and Jeneba Tarmoh were recently named to the list of 10 semifinalists on the Bowerman Award watch list as announced by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association this week.

A ten-person advisory board will evaluate the field of 10 semifinalists and three finalists will be named on July 14. The Bowerman Award recognizes the top collegiate athlete of the season.

Joining Beard and Tarmoh on the semifinalist list for the Bowerman Award are Nia Ali (USC), Brigetta Barrett (Arizona), Emma Coburn (Colorado), Kimberlyn Duncan (LSU), Jordan Hasay (Oregon), Sheila Reid (Villanova), Tina Sutej (Arkansas) and Brianne Theisen (Oregon).

In capturing the NCAA Outdoor Championship earlier this month Beard and Tarmoh each played key roles as the Aggies won the team title by four points over Oregon.

Beard won the NCAA 400 meters in 51.10 seconds to match the indoor title she claimed in a world best of 50.79. Indoors, Beard also anchored the Aggie 4x400 to a 3:29.72 victory with a 51.09 split. Then outdoors, she produced the fastest split ever at an NCAA meet with a 49.13 clocking that earned A&M a 3:26.31 victory.

In winning both NCAA 400 titles and running on both 4x400 winning relays Beard became just the third female sprinter, and the first since 1999, to win all four NCAA titles in the same season.

Tarmoh also ran on both first-place NCAA 4x400 relays this season. She added a pair of NCAA runner-up finishes in the 200 and was a member of the second-place 4x100. Her time of 22.34 seconds in the NCAA Outdoor final equals the ninth-fastest collegiate time ever.

Tarmoh earned Big 12 Performer of the Year honors for her triple victory at the conference outdoor meet, winning the 100, 200 and running on the winning 4x100 relay.

United States, Jamaican Championships

Hayward Field on the University of Oregon campus is the destination for Aggie track and field athletes this weekend as they compete in the USA Track & Field Championships and the USA Junior Championships being held from June 23-26.

Meanwhile, another set of A&M athletes will head to their native Jamaica for the National Senior Championships held this same weekend in Kingston.

Texas A&M athletes competing in the U.S. Championships include Jessica Beard (400), Melvin Echard (long jump), Tran Howell (200), Emalie Humphreys (javelin), Sam Humphreys (javelin), Bryan Miller (400), Michael Preble (800), Tyrone Stewart (triple jump), and Jeneba Tarmoh (100, 200).

Porscha Lucas, the 2009 and 2010 NCAA Champion in the 200 meters, will compete in that event this weekend. Kevin Ondrasek, an A&M grad who worked as a volunteer assistant coach this season, qualified for the 1,500-meter field.

Other athletes with ties to the Aggie program as current or former volunteer assistant coaches competing in Eugene include Aries Merritt (110 hurdles) and Wallace Spearmon (200).

The USA Championships serve as the selection meet for the IAAF World Championships, held in Daegu, South Korea from August 27 to September 4, as well as the Pan Am Games, held in Guadalajara, Mexico, on October 24-29.

Two current Aggies, Prezel Hardy, Jr. and Ashley Collier, will be contesting the 100 and 200 meters during the U.S. Junior Championships, where athletes can qualify for the Pan Am Juniors that will be held July 22-24 at Miramar, Florida.

A group of six A&M athletes are competing at the Jamaican Championships. The crew includes seniors Sasha-Kay Matthias (long jump, triple jump), Julian Reid (long jump, triple jump), Natasha Ruddock (100 hurdles) and Andrea Sutherland (400 hurdles).

Aggie grads Clora Williams and Simone Facey are also competing in Jamaica. Williams, the NCAA 400 champ in 2006, will compete in the 800 at the Jamaican championships while Facey, the NCAA 200 winner in 2008, is entered in the 100 and 200.