Andre De Grasse wins prestigious award

After winning both the 100m and 200m dashes at the 2015 NCAA Championships on June 12, junior Andre De Grasse was named the 2015 National Men’s Track Athlete of the Year by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association on June 17.

De Grasse became the second Trojan in three seasons to win the award, after Bryshon Nellum won in 2013.

De Grasse began his record-breaking day with the 100m dash, posting a time of 9.75 (+2.7w), his personal record. Though he was aided in part by the wind, his time is the fastest any-condition time run by a Canadian athlete, the second fastest any-condition time by a collegiate runner and a tie with Tyson Gay’s time at the 2008 Olympic Trials for the-fastest any-condition time at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon.

Forty-five minutes after this historic win, De Grasse won the 200m with a time of 19.58 (+2.4w), the world-leading any conditions time. De Grasse became the first Trojan to win both the 100m and 200m dashes at the NCAA Championships since Clancy Edwards did so in 1978.

Both times ranked in the top 10 fastest performances in world history in all conditions.

In addition to these individual events, De Grasse also ran the second leg for USC’s 4x100m relay. The team placed fourth with a time of 38.75.

This wasn’t De Grasse’s only impressive award win of the year. He also was named the 2015 Pac-12 Men’s Track Athlete of the Year after an impressive showing at the Pac-12 Championships May 16-17, which earned him a spot at the NCAA Championships. De Grasse again won both the 100m and 200m races and ran on USC’s winning 4x100m relay. His 100m and 200m performances at the conference meet were also historic, as his 100m time of 9.97 (+0.6) set the USC, Pac-12 Meet and UCLA Drake Stadium record. His semifinal 200m time of 20.03 (-0.1) not only tied him for second on USC’s all-time list, but also set the Canadian record.

The NCAA Championships capped off the Ontario native’s first season at USC after he transferred from Coffeyville Community College in Kansas. De Grasse has another year of eligibility if he wishes to return.