May 8, 2013
- The University of Tennessee track & field program will travel to Columbia, Mo., this week as the 2013 SEC Outdoor Championships are set to take place at Walton Stadium this Thursday through Sunday, featuring the finest collegiate competition in the sport.
- Multi-event action will open the competition on Thursday at 12:30 p.m. ET, with the men's hammer throw to follow at 3 p.m. ET. Tennessee will not have any competitors in the heptathlon or decathlon.
- The women's hammer throw at 3 p.m. ET will mark the start of day two for the Vols and Lady Vols, while both Saturday's and Sunday's events commence at 2 p.m. ET.
- The Vols have won a league-leading 25 SEC Outdoor Championships, including most recently in 2007, while the Lady Vols have captured four. Arkansas has won two men's titles in a row, while LSU is looking for its fourth-straight crown.
FOLLOW THE ACTION
- Live coverage of the meet will air on ESPN3.com on Saturday and Sunday. That coverage will air from 4:40-7:45 p.m. ET Saturday and from 3:50-7:45 p.m. ET Sunday.
- Action on Thursday and Friday, and outside of the ESPN3 windows on Saturday and Sunday will air live for free at MUTigers.com.
- Live results are available via Branch Sports Technology and can be found right here.
- Also be sure to follow the Tennessee track & field team on twitter at @Vol_Track for in-meet updates.
NATION'S BEST COMPETITION
- Twelve SEC men's and women's teams are ranked in the nation's top 25, including nine in the top 10, according to the USTFCCCA.
- The SEC boasts four teams in the top 10 on the men's side, including the nation's top-two teams in defending NCAA Champion Florida (No. 1) and Texas A&M (No. 2). The SEC leads the nation with seven men's teams in the top 25.
- On the women's side, the SEC features five teams in the top 10 nationally. Texas A&M is the highest-ranked SEC team at No. 2, while Florida is No. 3 and LSU is No. 4.
- The Vols enter the competition in search of their league-leading 26th SEC Outdoor title. The Vols won 12 of the first 14 championships, and last captured the crown in 2007 in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
- The Lady Vols won the opening four championships from 1981-1984, but have not captured the outdoor title since.
- The highest point total to ever win the SEC Outdoor Championships is 223, set by the Lady Vols in 1983.
- The last SEC Outdoor top-three team finishes by Tennessee came in 2008 (third) for the Vols and in 2009 (third) for the Lady Vols.
- Currently, six Vols and one relay team currently have marks ranked in the top 50 in the nation. Five Lady Vols appear in the top 50, with Felicia Brown and Kia Jackson appearing twice.
- Historically, the Vols have dominated the pole vault competition at the SEC Outdoor Championships. Not only do they hold 17 titles, including five in the past seven seasons, but Big Orange legend Lawrence Johnson remains the meet record holder from a mark (19-0.25/5.80) he set in 1994.
- The current Vol vaulter trio of Jake Blankenship, Chase Brannon and Tyler Porter will be looking to build off a great regular season and continue the legacy at the meet this week. Currently, all three rank in the top 10 in the league.
- Vol sophomore Matthew Hoty leads the SEC in the shot put entering the meet, but will have to contend with two-time defending champion Stephen Saenz of Auburn. The Vols have won four titles in the event all-time, with the last coming in 1983.
- The Lady Vols have owned the 800-meter race in recent SEC history, capturing three of the last four titles. Overall, UT has 11 wins in the event. This season, Nijgia Snapp and Kianna Ruff will look to knock off defending champion Charlene Lipsey of LSU.
- Former Lady Vol Annie Alexander won a combined six SEC Outdoor shot put and discus titles, including the past two in both events. Freshman Cassie Wertman owns the sixth-best shot put mark in the SEC, while junior Aslynn Halvorson is eighth in the discus entering the meet.
- Brown, a freshman sprinter, hopes to land the Lady Vols first 200m SEC title since 1984 this week. Brown currently sits fourth in the league with a time of 23.04 and a win would make her just the fifth Lady Vol champ in the event.
A QUICK LOOK BACK
- Tennessee's women placed fifth with 97 points at this meet a year ago. They were 11 points out of fourth and 14.5 out of a top-three finish. It equaled the result at the 2011 meet.
- The UT men, meanwhile, finished 10th in 2012, tallying 30 points in Baton Rouge, La.
THE CLARK EFFECT
- The Lady Vols have won two NCAA Indoor team titles in 2005 and 2009, both coming under J.J. Clark, while the Vols claimed the 2002 team title.
- The Lady Vols have won four NCAA Indoor titles in the distance medley relay, coming in 2004, 2008, 2009 and 2010, all under Clark. The 2009 unit set world, American and NCAA meet records at 10:50.98.
- The UT women have seven top-10 NCAA Indoor finishes in Clark's previous 10 seasons, including titles in 2005 and 2009, a runner-up effort in 2010 and a third-place result in 2007.
- Clark, a three-time SEC Indoor Women's Coach of the Year, also piloted the Lady Vols to SEC Indoor titles in 2005, 2007 and 2009.
- In 10 full seasons leading the Lady Vols and three with the Vols, Clark's athletes have won 60 SEC titles (Women 31 in/27 Out; Men: 1 in/1 Out).
- Tennessee has now had 295 combined indoor and outdoor All-Americans in program history. Under Clark, the Lady Vols and Vols have combined for 202 All-America certificates.
- The next scheduled event will take the Vol and Lady Vol qualifiers to the NCAA East Preliminaries in Greensboro, N.C., from May 23-25. The top 48 competitors and 12 relays teams in the East Region qualify for the event.
- Qualifiers will then participate in the 2013 NCAA Outdoor Championships at legendary Hayward Field on the campus of the University of Oregon in Eugene, Ore.