Friday, April 1, 2016

V 6 N. 24 April, 1966

APRIL 1966
    Has there ever been a relay powerhouse like Southern University? The relatively small Baton Rogue school doesn't receive the attention of neighboring Louisiana State in most sports but that changes when track season starts. The Jaguars open at the Texas Southern Relays March 18-19. The Texas Southern kids take the national lead in the 880 relay, running 1:23.2 in the prelims but the Jags take the final in 1:23.4. As long as they are there, they add the mile relay, two mile relay and the sprint medley to their win total.
    This is just a warm up for the Texas Relays in Austin on April 1-2 where Southern runs three races no more than three tenths of a second from the world records and establishes a collegiate record in another. They win the 440 in 39.9, two clicks off Stanford's record. The Jags run 1:22.9 in the 880 prelims, only three tenths off Abilene Christian's world record. The only bump in the road comes from those pesky Teas Southern guys who turn the tables on their Louisiana neighbors in the final as both teams clock 1:23.4. Undeterred, the Jaguars take the mile relay in 3:04.7, two tenths from Arizona State's record. The cherry on top of the sundae is a collegiate record in the sprint medley where their 3:16.5 is the second fastest ever behind the Santa Clara Youth Village's 3:15.5. Oh, and just to keep everybody involved, the Jaguars win the two mile relay in 7:27.2 to cap a couple pretty good days.
    Mention needs be made of Theron Lewis' and Robert Johnson's efforts for Southern this weekend. Lewis ran 440 splits of 45.3 and 45.6, an 1:50.1 880 leg and anchored the 880 relay in both the prelims and final. For all that he may not have been the best guy wearing a Southern uniform this weekend. Robert Johnson split 45.8 and 1:48.7 the first day and 46.0 and 1:47.0 the second.
    Santa Barbara's Easter Relays had quality performances at the other end of the running spectrum. UCLA's Bob Day and Geoff Pyne ran together for three miles of the 5000 meters before Day showed his significant mile speed to pull away from his New Zealand teammate to finish in 13:44.2 with Pyne at 13:47.4.
Brian Sternberg and Paul Wilson hold the collegiate pole vault record at 16-8, but if UCLA's Marc Savage has his way, they may not hold it for long. Savage vaults 16-7 ¼ to beat Wilson on misses.
    On April 9th in an all comers meet at Mt. SAC, roommates John Pennel and Bob Seagren welcome Sam Kirk into the exclusive 17 foot vault fraternity. All three clear 17-1 with Pennel winning on misses. The other member of the club is now retired world record holder Fred Hansen at 17-4. Pennel nearly takes that record with a near miss at 17-4¾.
    Another transcontinental jump finds us at the Pelican Relays in Baton Rouge that same day where Southern's 22 year old ex-paratrooper freshman, Willie Davenport, runs 13.2 to tie Martin Lauer's and Lee Calhoun's world record in the 120 high hurdles. Well, sorta, kinda, maybe. Track and Field News writes, “Some suspicion has been cast on the time in reference to its acceptability as a world record”.   Details are promised in the next issue. Davenport's teammates continue their relay dominance with 40.2, 3:06.0, 7:27.2 and 3:17.5 sprint medley wins. Their dual with Texas Southern doesn't go well. Southern hits the tape first in 1:22.9, three tenths ahead of TSU, but that sticky detail about passing in the zone eliminates both, making Arkansas A&M the winner at 1:26.0.
    In late and undated news, the possibility of a collegiate PV record by Marc Savage becomes a reality as he clears 16-9 in a dual meet at Stanford. Across the bay Tommie Smith runs a windy 9.2 and anchors San Jose State to a 39.9 relay win.
    Join us now as we skip through the statistical pages of this issue, picking out significant minutia. Tommie Smith may have some potential as a quarter miler. On April 2 he eases up before the finish yet is timed in 45.7, the third fastest ever quarter mile and 12th when 400 meter times are converted.
    Former Oregon runners are enjoying the early season.  So is Bob Day.   Dyrol Burleson has returned from Europe and has run a nation leading 3:57.5 mile. UCLA's Day is second at 3:58.4. Jim Grelle's rare attempt at two miles has resulted in an 8:34.0 leader. Day is second at 8:37.4. Day leads the 3mile/5000 at 13:20.2 and 13:44.0.
    Neil Steinhauer, a junior at Oregon, is now fourth on the all time shot put list behind only Randy Matson, Dallas Long and Bill Nieder with his 65-3½.
    The 400 intermediate hurdles are now an official collegiate dual meet event (except in the Big 8 which chose to go with the 300 meter variety) and Geoff Vanderstock of Mt. SAC has run 50.0m. How good is this? Only Russia's Vasiliy Anisimov ran faster last year at 49.5.
    Surprisingly there is a high school kid with the ninth best javelin throw in the country this season. Shreveport, Louisiana Woodlawn High's Terry Bradshaw has thrown 243-7 for the HS record, 32 feet better than any high schooler this year.
Terry Bradshaw would break actor Michael Landon's national record
We'll watch his development. Who knows what his future holds, maybe a world record, several national championships, a couple Olympic gold medals and a lengthy career as a high school track coach and PE teacher.  We'll keep an eye on him.

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