Feb. 5, 2013
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – After winning his third meet of the season and tying a long-standing UT indoor record in just his fourth collegiate meet, Tennessee track & field standout Jake Blankenship has been named the Southeastern Conference Co-Men’s Freshman of the Week.
With over 100 colleges and universities spanning both the nation and the globe in attendance, Blankenship helped guide the Vols to a fourth-place team finish at the historic Armory Collegiate Invitational this past weekend, capturing the championship pole vault title with a mark of 18-feet, 1/2-inches at The Armory.
It was the second-consecutive and third overall victory of the rookie’s young career, finishing four inches ahead of teammate Chase Brannon. The mark ties Olympic silver medalist and former Vol great Lawrence Johnson, who set the UT rookie record in 1993.
With that vault, the Blacklick, Ohio, native currently ranks second in the SEC and is tied for fourth in the nation this season. The mark is also tied for the 27th-best vault in the world in 2013.
In addition, Blankenship currently leads all SEC freshmen in the event and ranks second among rookies in the country.
The majority of the Big Orange track & field program will head to Fayetteville, Ark., this week for the Tyson Invitational at the University of Arkansas, but Blankenship and his fellow pole vaulters will travel to Birmingham, Ala., to compete in Samford’s Multi and Invitational on Saturday, Feb. 9.
SEC Track and Field Athletes of the Week (Feb. 5, 2013)
SEC Men’s Runner of the Week: Dedric Dukes, Florida
SEC Men’s Field Athlete of the Week: Damar Forbes, LSU
SEC Co-Men’s Freshman of the Week: Jake Blankenship, Tennessee
SEC Co-Men’s Freshman of the Week: Arman Hall, Florida
SEC Women’s Runner of the Week: Kimberlyn Duncan, LSU
SEC Women’s Field Athlete of the Week: Denise Hinton, LSU
SEC Women’s Freshman of the Week: Shaunae Miller, Georgia