USC-UCLA Dual Meet Sunday
April 26, 2012
The No. 6 ranked USC men's and No. 24 ranked Trojan women's track and field team will be competing at the annual USC-UCLA Dual Meet to be hosted by the Bruins on April 29 beginning at 10 a.m. with the women's hammer throw. The meet will be streamed live on FoxSportsWest.com beginning at 2 p.m. with the first running event, the women's 5000m race. Watch It Live
USC-UCLA DUAL MEET HISTORY - The USC-UCLA Dual Meet is one of the most storied track battles in the country which has featured many track and field greats and NCAA champions over the years, and this edition should be no exception. The USC men's team comes in ranked No. 6 and the women's team No. 24, while the UCLA men's and women's teams are currently unranked. The USC men own a 42-36 advantage in the Dual Meet, while the women's team trails 21-7. USC has swept two of the last three Dual Meets and the women's team has won four consecutive meets for the first time in the series history.
DUAL MEET TRIVIA - A USC male athlete has won the Dual Meet 100m dash race nine straight seasons and a Trojan woman has won the 100m race for 10 consecutive seasons. USC's men's 4x400m relay team has won seven consecutive titles, while the USC women's 4x100m relay has won seven straight times. Redshirt senior Zsofia Erdelyi won both the 5000m and 1500m races in all three previous seasons she competed in the Dual Meet (2008-10).
TOP 25 TROJANS - Currently 15 Trojans and one USC relay team rank among the top 25 in the country. USC men ranking in the top 25 are: Aaron Brown (T-3rd-100m), Devonte Stewart (18th-200m), Josh Mance (T6th-400m), Joey Hughes (14th-400m), Bryshon Nellum (1st-400m), Reggie Wyatt (3rd-400m IH), 4x400m (1st), Daniel Szabo (5th-Hammer), Cooper Thompson (17th-Javelin). Trojan women ranking in the top 25 are: Aareon Payne (12th-200m), Dalilah Muhammad (25th-400m IH), Alexandra Collatz (14th-Discus), Jenny Ozorai (3rd-Hammer), Marissa Minderler (6th-Hammer), Jade Niemeyer (17th-Hammer) and Kristine Busa (17th-Javelin).
BROWN NOW AMONG NCAA's ELITE SPRINTERS - Sophomore Aaron Brown won the 100m dash at the Trojan Invitational on March 24 with a PR of 10.25, just .02 seconds outside of USC's all-time top 10. He then won the Invitational 100m dash at the Texas Relays with a wind-aided time of 10.09 (+3.1) on March 31 which currently ranks as tied for the third-fastest time in the country. Brown had a strong first season at USC, despite battling through a nagging hamstring injury. He won his 100m semifinals heat at the Pac-10 Championships, but reaggravated a hamstring injury suffered on May 1. He tried to run in the 200m semifinals, but had to pull out of the rest of the championships. He recovered enough to compete at the NCAA Preliminary Rounds and advanced to the NCAA semifinals in the 100m dash with a time of 10.42. He ran 10.55 in the semifinals to finish 20th at the NCAAs. Brown ran his first 200m race of the season at the Mt. SAC Relays on April 21 and set a PR with a time of 20.76.
MEN'S RELAY TEAM EYES 3-MINUTE MARK - A definite strength of the USC men's team is its quarter-milers who form quite a formidable 4x400m relay team. Five different runners (Joey Hughes, Bryshon Nellum, Josh Mance, Reggie Wyatt and Duane Walker) have teamed up to post parts of 3 of the top 10 1600m relay times in USC history. Nellum, Hughes, Wyatt and Mance posted a time of 3:02.24 on March 24, the second fastest 4x400m relay in USC history, the NCAA leading time and a new Loker Stadium record. They now trail only the NCAA champion team of Travis Hannah, Curtis Conway, Martin Cannady and Quincy Watts which set the school record with a time of 3:00.58 on June 6, 1992 in Austin, Texas. In addition, Scott DeYoung and Josh Tennefoss provide capable depth to this unit.
HUGHES SUFFERS HAMSTRING INJURY AT MT. SAC RELAYS - Senior captain Joey Hughes suffered a left hamstring injury in the 400m dash Invite Elite race at the Mt. SAC Relays on April 21. He has begun treatment this week and will continue to be evaluated. Hughes had a spectacular first three seasons at USC. Already he ranks sixth all-time by a Trojan male in the 400m dash with a time of 45.05 and has been part of the second, fifth and eighth fastest 4x400m relay teams in USC history. Last season he earned All-America honors in the 400m dash, placing fifth with a time of 45.64. He remains one of USC's busiest athletes, often competing in the 400m, 200m, 4x400m and 4x100m races. At the 2011 Pac-10 Championships, Hughes took second place in both the 200m and 400m dashes, anchored the winning 4x400m relay which posted the then-10th-fastest time in USC history and ran the second leg for the sixth-place 4x100m relay team. His best 400m this season is 45.99 which currently ranks 14th nationally.
NELLUM PROVING HE IS BACK - Redshirt senior Bryshon Nellum posted the top collegiate time in the 400m dash this season when he ran a 45.18 in the Invite Elite race at the Mt. SAC Relays on April 21, finishing behind only former Olympic finalists Martyn Rooney (44.92) and Jeremy Wariner (44.96). Nellum's time was a PR and the ninth-fastest 400m dash ever by a Trojan. Nellum has been showing signs all season that he might finally be all the way back from the injuries which have held him back ever since he won the 2007 National Track Athlete of the Year Award while at Long Beach Poly. For the first time since Nellum arrived at USC he is running pain free. In his first collegiate race on March 1, 2008 he pulled a hamstring causing him to miss the rest of that season. He then suffered a gunshot injury to his legs in the Fall of 2008 which wiped away the entire 2009 campaign. He was able to return for the 2010 and 2011 seasons, but continued to run with pain as bullet fragments were touching nerves in his leg. Each of those seasons ended with surgery to try and remove the fragments. Still, Nellum was able to show his pedigree by placing third in the 400m at the 2010 Pac-10 Championships and running a season-best time of 45.94 in the 400m which was the 15th-fastest regular season time in the country. Both the 2010 and 2011 seasons came to an end at the NCAA Preliminary Rounds when he was forced to shut it down due to pain in his leg. In 2011 before the injury, he again was able to place third in the 400m dash at the Pac-10 Championships with a collegiate best time of 45.56. Also this season, Nellum has run a 20.76 to win the 200m dash at the Tiny Lister Invitational on April 7 and ran the leadoff leg for the 4x400m relay team which posted the second-fastest time in school history of 3:02.24 at the Trojan Invitational on March 24. Nellum's PR in the 200m dash is still the 20.43 he ran as a high school senior.
FOOTBALL ALSO LEADING IN TRACK - The USTFCCCA has put together a list of football players competing in track this season and Marqise Lee in the long jump (24-1) and Tony Burnett in the triple jump (49-5.75) have the top marks in their respective jumping events among all divisions of football players. USC has a long tradition of football stars adding to the Trojans' great track and field heritage with crossover stars like NCAA champions Earl McCullouch, O.J. Simpson, Edesel Garrison and Kevin Young. In addition to Lee and Burnett, D.J. Morgan (sprints) and Nickell Robey (jumps) are other football players competing this season. Burnett has already won two triple jump competitions this season and Lee has won the long jump once and placed second twice. Lee actually has a season-best long jump of 24-4.25 (7.42m) on Feb. 25, but that mark does not show on decending order lists because marks do not count until March 1. Robey has a season-best long jump of 23-1.25 (7.04m), which ranks fifth among football players nationally, and the football foursome teamed up to run a 41.05 4x100m relay at the Rossi Relays on Feb. 25.
NEXT WEEK - USC's track and field team will be training for the Pac-12 Championships May 12-13 in Eugene, Ore.