Duncan Among 10 in Running for Bowerman
BATON ROUGE – As the NCAA leader in three events while preparing to lead the No. 1-ranked Lady Tigers into the semifinal and final rounds of the NCAA Outdoor Championships next week, LSU’s junior sprinter Kimberlyn Duncan is a favorite to take home The Bowerman this season as the premier women’s athlete in collegiate track and field for the 2012 campaign.
Duncan is among 10 athletes nationwide featured for the final women’s watch list for The Bowerman that was released Thursday afternoon by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.
Now in its fourth year of existence, The Bowerman is college track and field’s equivalent to The Heisman Trophy in college football and is presented annually by the USTFCCCA to the premier male and female athlete at the collegiate level each season as part of its annual convention.
The 10 women’s semifinalists for The Bowerman will be announced on Tuesday, June 19, while the three finalists will be announced on Friday, June 29, during the U.S. Olympic Trials in Eugene, Ore. The winner of The Bowerman will be announced on Dec. 19 in conjunction with the USTFCCCA Convention in Orlando, Fla., as each of the three finalists will be invited to participate in the ceremony.
Duncan’s selection to the final watch list for The Bowerman comes only one day after she was recognized as the USA Track & Field Athlete of the Week in the wake of her record-setting and world-leading efforts at the NCAA East Preliminary Rounds held May 24-26 at Hodges Stadium in Jacksonville, Fla.
Duncan catapulted herself to the top of the 2012 world list in the 200-meter dash while shattering her own low-altitude collegiate record as she sprinted to a time of 22.22 seconds in Saturday’s quarterfinal.
That performance eclipsed her previous personal record and low-altitude collegiate record of 22.24 posted in winning the NCAA Outdoor crown as a sophomore just one year ago. It also moved her to No. 2 on the NCAA’s all-time wind-legal list as former Lady Tiger national champion Dawn Sowell set the all-altitude collegiate record of 22.04 at altitude in Provo, Utah, at the 1989 NCAA Outdoor Championships.
While running with only the slightest of tailwinds at 0.1 meters per second, Duncan also became the 2012 world leader in the 200-meter dash, surpassing the previous world-leading 22.31 (+1.5) by Carmelita Jeter at the Rafer Johnson/Jackie Joyner-Kersee Invitational in Westwood, Calif., on April 14.
A native of Katy, Texas, Duncan has shown tremendous form as a defending NCAA 200-meter champion as she enters the NCAA semifinal with 17-straight victories against collegiate competition in the event.
The 2011 NCAA silver medalist and 2012 NCAA leader in the 100-meter dash also earned her spot in the national semifinals in the short sprint as the top qualifier at the NCAA East Preliminary Rounds.
Duncan has been a revelation as one of the world’s leading 100-meter sprinters this spring as her personal record and SEC Championships meet record of 10.96 ranks No. 5 on the world list for 2012. She has even run a wind-aided 10.94 in the event this spring as an NCAA title favorite. She set her PR of 10.96 with an impressive win at the SEC Championships while establishing a new meet record.
Duncan also runs the anchor leg for LSU’s defending national champion 4×100-meter relay that enters the NCAA Championships as the NCAA leader with a seasonal-best run of 42.99 at the Texas Relays.
Both the semifinal and final rounds of the 2012 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships will run June 6-9 at Drake Stadium on the campus of Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa. LSU returns to the site of its last national championship when it took home the team title in 2008.
The Bowerman Women’s Watch List (May 31, 2012)
Name, Year, School, Events
Brigetta Barrett, Junior, Arizona, Jumps
Tia Brooks, Junior, Oklahoma, Throws
Diamond Dixon, Sophomore, Kansas, Sprints (N)
Kimberlyn Duncan, Junior, LSU, Sprints
English Gardner, Sophomore, Oregon, Sprints (P)
Whitney Gipson, Senior, TCU, Sprints/Jumps
Christina Manning, Senior, Ohio State, Sprints/Hurdles
Jeneva McCall, Senior, Southern Illinois, Throws
Tina Sutej, Senior, Arkansas, Pole Vault
Brianne Theisen, Senior, Oregon, Combined Events