NORMAN, Okla. – A spring tradition returns this weekend as The University of Oklahoma track and field programs host the 45th annual John Jacobs Invitational. The two-day meet begins Friday, April 18, at the John Jacobs Track and Field Complex. There will be no admission charges for either day of the meet. Parking for the meet is available in the Duck Pond parking lot, located directly north of the complex.
The collegiate division will start at 5 p.m. Friday with the women’s hammer to be followed by the men’s hammer. Events begin Saturday at 11 a.m. with the women’s javelin. The first event on the track is the women’s 3,000-meter steeplechase at 12:15 p.m.
This invitational marks the first and only home meet for the Sooners during the 2014 outdoor season and is the first time OU has competed in Norman at the J.D. Martin Invitational on January 25, the second week of the indoor season.
“We are excited to be able to compete in front of students, alums and Sooner fans,” head coach Jim VanHootegem said. “We only have one major invitational a year at our track, so we are excited that we will be able to connect with people who want to watch us.”
In addition to Oklahoma, student-athletes from Oklahoma State (men and women), North Texas (men and women), Abilene Christian (men and women), Southern Methodist (women) and Central Oklahoma (women) are scheduled to compete.
VanHootegem expressed his excitement on the rare in-season prospect of seeing the entire team compete at the same time and place, a team that returns seven student-athletes who won events at last year’s meet.
“This is really the only meet before the Big 12 Championships that our entire team for the men and women will line up to compete,” VanHootegem explained. “This gives us a chance to really see what we can do when everyone comes together.”
Sooner winners who return from 2013 event include Ebanga Arrey, 200; Arrey 400; Geo Tamez-Reyna, 100-meter hurdles; Avione Allgood, shot put; Ethan Baker, 200; Nathaniel WInfrey, 400-meter IH; Kaelan Washington, long jump; and Austin Perry, shot put.
In addition to the competition on Saturday, the Sooners will honor 11 senior student-athletes who will be competing in Norman for the last time as a Sooner. They include Donva Adkism, Ethan Baker, Kristen Carson, Patrick Gomez, Ashley Kowalewski, Morgan Nichols, Rylee Rackley, Waymon Storey, Jr., Matthias Wicks, Molly Williams and Nathaniel Winfrey.