Sooners score in all three NCAA Championships involving cross country and track and field.
June 15, 2011
NORMAN, Okla. — The University of Oklahoma finished fifth in the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) John McDonnell Program of the Year race for the 2010-2011 academic year. The USTFCCCA Program of the Year award, now in its third year of existence, is given to an institution that had the best combined team finishes in each of the NCAA’s cross country/track & field sports in a given academic year.
Florida State won this year’s award as the only program in the country to record top-five national finishes at each of the championships in the year.
The Oklahoma men earned the top-five finish after finishing fifth at the NCAA Cross Country Championships in November, 13th at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships in March and 20th at last week’s NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. The finish is an improvement for the program after finishing sixth in 2010 Program of the Year race. OU led all Big 12 schools, with Texas the next closest at ninth. A total of 15 programs recorded team finishes at each of the year’s NCAA championships.
OU started off the race in fifth after earning a program-best fifth-place finish at the NCAA Cross Country Championships, led by Kevin Schwab’s All-America honor at the event. The Sooners moved up to fourth after the NCAA Indoor Championships where they were bolstered by Mookie Salaam’s NCAA title in the 200-meter dash. The program eventually slipped back to its final position of fifth after finishing 20th at last week’s NCAA Championships with all 11 points coming from Salaam.
In order to be eligible for the award, teams must qualify for each of the NCAA Championships. Scoring is based on the team’s finish at each NCAA Division I Championship in cross country, indoor track & field, and outdoor track & field (i.e. 1st = 1 point, 2nd = 2 points, 31st = 31 points) with the lowest total score for all three championships combined determining the award recipient. Ties among schools split points for positions taken.