After successful 2010 indoor and outdoor seasons, the BYU men’s track team has another bright future and high expectations heading into the 2011 season.
The Cougars indoor dominance will look to continue. With 10 conference titles under their belt, an 11th MWC championship is the goal for the newest crop of athletes under head coach Mark Robison. When the team hits outdoor competition, it will be in search of a 10th MWC title.
The decathlon multi-event team is expected to be very strong this year. With national achievements within their grasp the Cougars will look for senior Phillip Bettis to set the bar while Tyler Brown, Tek Fish and Chase Dalton work to contribute.
All-American cross country runner Miles Batty expects to be another impact athlete on the track. Batty, a junior, along with sophomore Travis Fuller expect this distance team to be as good as it has been in recent years and keep up a solid tradition.
Distance Coach Ed Eyestone has several runners working up to potential with several possible All-Americans among the group.
Newcomers will fill the voids left by departing seniors with several freshmen looking to make immediate impact. Ben Johnston and redshirt freshman Jared Ward will impress in the early meets and look to add to a solid core of athletes.
Returning athletes, Sean Adams, Tanner Emrich and Chris Carter will continue success and several freshmen will make immediate impact.
Freshmen Zachary Blackham and Mark Carlson are high school standouts the could provide a lift to a hurdles group that has already been a top team for the conference year in and year out.
With field events always being a point of strength for the Cougars, the jumps are no different. Several returning stars will be back in these events, including MWC All-Conference athletes Aaron Powell, Trevor Heiner and Anse Myller DeAraujo.
Heiner was both the indoor and outdoor champion for the high jump in 2010, clearing a mark of 2.10m. He also competed at the NCAA West Regionals and cleared 2.01m.
Powell and DeAraujo are both long and triple jumpers for BYU and finished in the top six in each event at the 2010 MWC Championships.
BYU returns another all-conference performer in Chris Little this season. Little was the 2010 outdoor MWC Champion in the pole vault after clearing 5.40m and also competed at the NCAA Championships.
The Cougars also return Joshua Speirs who can contribute as well as Victor Weirich who was an All-Conference athlete in 2007 as a freshman. With loads of returning talent in the pole vault and several up and comers joining the team as new freshman, the pole vault could again be one of BYU’s strongest events.
All-Conference performer Rhyan Atrice returns as a junior to compete in the 200-meter and 400-meter. Atrice finished second in the 400-meter at the MWC Championships and competed for the Cougars at the NCAA West Regionals. Junior James Ghormley has seen solid improvement and will also be a leader in the sprints.
Also returning is junior Steven Hart and transfer Cade Lindahl. Lindahl will to be a force in the 400-meter for BYU.
Sean Adams will also compete in the sprints while James Derek McAllister, a junior would continue to build on a solid 2010 campaign.
Several All-Americans return for the throwers in 2011, putting them as one of the best parts of the 2011 team. Loaded with experienced seniors the throwers will be consistant point scorers.
All-American trio, Leif Arrhenius, Blain Baker and Sean Richardson will lead the way. Arrhenius finished fourth in the weight throw at the NCAA Championships while picking up a 10th place finish at nationals in the shot put.
Baker and Richardson picked up their first All-American honors in the javelin in 2011, finishing ninth and 11th, respectively at the NCAA Championships. Baker threw the javelin 69.21m and Richardson went for 68.15m.
Newcomer Zach Stetler adds youth to a well seasoned throwing team that looks to dominate conference competition and make their mark on the nation.