April 24, 2013
- The Tennessee track & field team travels to historic Franklin Field in Philadelphia, for the 119th Penn Relays from April 25-27.
- Considered the oldest and largest track meet in the country, the Penn Relays feature novice, high school, college and Olympic-caliber competition in from of crowds that range from 20,000-plus on Thursday to more than 50,000 on Saturday.
- Franklin Field, in the urban and Ivy League setting of Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania, will once again serve as the venue of the meet, which dates back to April 21, 1895.
- It was named for one of our nation's founding fathers and the founder of Penn, Benjamin Franklin.
- In addition to high school and college events, Saturday's slate features the 14th edition of the USA vs. The World competition, pitting U.S. relay lineups against teams from around the globe.
- A small contingent of Vols and Lady Vols will also travel to Birmingham, Ala., to compete in the Samford Open on Saturday, April 27.
FOLLOW THE ACTION
- The 14th edition of the USA vs. The World competition will be broadcast live on NBC on Saturday, April 27 from 1-3 p.m. ET. An additional two hours of coverage will be shown on the same day on Universal Sports from 3-5 p.m. ET.
- Non-televised portions of the Penn Relays will be broadcast live on a pay-per view broadcast online via Penn Relays TV.
- Also be sure to follow the Tennessee track & field team on twitter at @Vol_Track for in-meet updates.
CLARK'S PENN RELAYS PROFILE
- At Tennessee since 2002-03, J.J. Clark has overseen 12 victorious relay teams (all women's) at the Penn Relays and has had Nicole Cook (2004) and Sarah Bowman (2009) earn Outstanding Female Relay Athlete of the Meet accolades.
- His Lady Vol units hold meet records in the 4x800mR (8:17.91, 2009), 4x1500mR (17:08.34, 2009) and SMR (3:41.78, 2004).
- While at Florida from 1992-2002, his troops produced three 4x800m relay wins (1999, 2001, 02) and Erin Mertens was named the 2001 Outstanding Female Relay Athlete of the Meet.
VFLs & LVFLs AT PENN RELAYS
- Vols and Lady Vols For Life and 2012 Olympic medalists Tianna Madison, DeeDee Trotter and Justin Gatlin will all be in action at Franklin Field.
- With a world record and gold medal under her belt, Madison will run one leg on the women's 4x100-meter during the USA vs. The World competition on Saturday at 1:40 p.m.
- Trotter, who recently competed in Knoxville at the Sea Ray Relays, looks to defend her gold medal in the event with teammates Sanya Richards-Ross, Allyson Felix and Francena McCorory in the women's 4x400m relay on Saturday at 2:35 p.m.
- Gatlin, an Olympic silver medalist in the event, will run on one the American 4x100m relay squads.
- In addition former Lady Vols Chanelle Price and Phoebe Wright will run for the Red, White and Blue in the 4x800m relay.
UT'S PENN RELAYS MOAs
- Three Vols have received the Outstanding Men's Athlete Award at the Penn Relays. The club includes Reggie Jones (1976), Lawrence Johnson (1996) and Justin Gatlin (2002).
- Six Lady Vols have received the Outstanding Women's Relay Athlete Award at the Penn Relays. The group includes Brenda Webb (1979), Benita Fitzgerald (1982), Joetta Clark (1984), LaVonna Martin (1985), Nicole Cook (2004) and Sarah Bowman (2009).
A LOOK BACK
- Last season at the Penn Relays, the Lady Vols claimed their 20th baton-event title with an upset victory in the Sprint Medley Championship of America race. The quartet of Brittany Jones, Martinique Octave, Ellen Wortham and Chanelle Price crossed the line in 3:43.79 and was later named the top SMR of the 2012 season.
- The Lady Vols carded a second-place finish in the Distance Medley Championship of America, with Price, Wortham, Kianna Ruff and Brittany Sheffey finishing in 11:03.53.
- The Vols' sprint medley relay also placed second in the Championship of America section. Arnez Hardnick, Jamol James, Varick Tucker and Nick Kaiser finished in 3:21.41.
- Then-sophomore Linda Hadfield finished second in the college pole vault division with a mark of 13-1.5 (4.00m).
- The Vols' last triumphs at the meet came in 2009, as Joe Berry won the pole vault (17-4 1/2) and UT claimed the sprint medley relay (3:17.77).
VOLS RANKED 20TH
- Following the removal of 2012 marks from the rankings formula, the Volunteer track & field team has landed in the USTFCCCA top 25 for the first time in three years, making the week's fourth-largest jump to No. 20 in the nation.
- The Vols leaped 15 places from to 20th with 91.58 total points.
- Tennessee last checked in on the national rankings just over three years ago, coming in at No. 23 on April 20, 2010. It's the highest ranking for the Vols under the guidance of J.J. Clark, and overall since sitting at No. 11 on March 5, 2009.
- Check out the complete release here.
- The Lady Vols' 4x800m relay of Brittney Jackson, Kianna Ruff, Kelsey Kane and Nijgia Snapp broke both the Florida Relays and Percy Beard Track records this season in a time of 8:28.81.
- Heading into Penn Relays, it's the fastest time in the world in the event this year. Florida's mark of 8:30.15, which came in the same race, currently ranks second in the world for 2013.
- The mark, which ranks seventh all-time at UT, bested a track and meet record held by Tennessee's Rolanda Bell, Sarah Bowman, Phoebe Wright and Chanelle Price. The previous mark was 8:28.99.