The No. 5 men and No. 4 women’s track teams are both ranked in the top five of the national rankings for the first time since 2008. Part of the reason for this recent spike in success is a fresh load of talent for the Trojans.
For the week of April 13-19, three Trojans earned Pac-12 Athlete of the Week honors. A USC track and field athlete has won 11 of the 20 Pac-12 awards given out thus far this season. Junior sprinter Andre De Grasse of Ontario Canada, won his second award of the season following a dazzling performance at the Mt. SAC Relays on April 18.
The sprinter won the 100-meter, 200-meter and was a member of the winning 4×100-meter relay team.
De Grasse ran the 100-meter in only 9.87 seconds which is not only a new personal best, but also the fastest time in the world this season under any conditions. De Grasse then moved on to the 200-meter where he finished first ahead of a field of professionals once again setting a new personal record with a time of 20.16. The time also ties the Canadian record held by Aaron Brown.
De Grasse now sits at third all-time on the USC 200-meter list. He also holds the fastest times in the country in both the 100-meter and 200-meter this season.
USC’s relay team became the first collegiate team since 2002 and the second team in the last 29 years to win the 4×100-meter relay at Mt. SAC.
The event is composed of a significant number of professionals, but this year USC proved up to the challenge. The wining time was 38.98. De Grasse led off for the Trojans, followed by senior BeeJay Lee, junior Just’N Thymes and anchored by Bryan Mercado.
Conor McCullough, a redshirt senior thrower for the Trojans, also received his second Pac-12 Athlete of the Week honor. McCullough won the men’s Invitational Hammer Throw competition which was also held at the Mt. SAC relays on April 18. McCullough’s best throw was a 241-9, a distance long enough for third farthest in USC history.
It is also the third longest throw by an American man this year and 16th in the world overall.
Junior discus thrower Tera Novy was named the Pac-12 Women’s Field Athlete of the Week after winning the discus throw competition at the Cal State L.A. Twilight Meet on April 16.
Novy set both a new personal best and a new USC school record with her throw of 193-10. The previous school record had stood since 2006.
Ahead for the Women of Troy is the Triton Invitational held in La Jolla on April 24 at which only the women’s throwers will be competing.
The next competition for the entire team will come on May 3 when USC hosts the annual USC-UCLA dual meet.
The meet will also be when USC’s 20 seniors receive their honors and farewells.