Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Felix Has Slight Lead After Day One of NCAA Decathlon Championship

Kurt Felix hoped to have a huge lead on the field to have a shot at a national championship in the decathlon.  Felix leads, but not by much.  Kurt is always far better on Day One than on Day Two.

1.  Kurt Felix, Boise State 4,187 points
2.  Gunnar Nixon, Arkansas 4,177
3.  Nick Huber, Cornell 4,065
4.  Bjorn Barrefors, Nebraska 4,053
5.  Kevin Lazas, Arkansas 4,025
5.  Isaac Murphy, Texas 4,025

Felix Runs 48.77 in 400

Felix placed fifth in his heat, which is so far fifth among decathletes.  One heat left to go.  Felix scored 872 points--he scored 879 at the MWC Championships.

Decathlon Standings After Four Events at NCAA Track & Field Championships

Felix leads, but he won't finish in the Top 5 without personal bests in some of the remaining events.

1.  Kurt Felix, Boise State 3,315
2.  Gunnar Nixon, Arkansas 3,312
3.  Kevin Lazas, Arkansas 3,271
4.  Bjorn Barrefors, Nebraska 3,255
5.  Nick Huber, Cornell 3,163

The 400-meters is next, not one of Kurt's best events.  Felix scored 879 points in the event at the MWC Championships.

Felix One of Four to Clear 6-8 3/4

Boise State's Kurt Felix tied with three other decathletes in the high jump, each clearing 6-8 3/4 but failing three times to clear 6-9 3/4.  Felix jumped 6-11 at the MWC Championships to score 906 points.

All four decathletes scored 850 points in the event.  Felix is now 7 points behind his pace at the MWC Championships.

Felix Clears 6-8 3/4 in Decathlon High Jump

Still five competitors remaining.

Nick Lazas of Arkansas and Bjorn Barrefors of Nebraska picked up 794 points in the event, while Huber got 767 and Isaac Murphy of Texas 714.

Felix with 2 Misses at 6-8 3/4

Kurt has one more attempt or will have to take 6-6 1/4 as his best jump.

There are four competitors left in the decathlon high jump, including Felix & Nixon.  Romain Martin of Texas-Arlington, who finished second last year, is one of the four.

Lazas is Out in Decathlon High Jump with Top Height of 6-6 1/4

Nick Lazas, the leader in the decathlon after two events, is out of the high jump competition after missing three times at 6-7.  He cleared 6-6 1/4, as did Barrefors of Nebraska.

There are now just five competitors left.

Felix Changes Mind, Clears 6-6 1/4

Kurt was going to pass all the way up to 6-9, but changed his strategy and I think for the better.  He jumped and cleared 6-6 1/4 on his first attempt, so he is guaranteed of a score, no matter how he does from here.  A good move.

10 competitors remain, including Barrefors and Lazas.  Five decathletes have cleared 6-7 1/2, including Nixon and Lazas.  Felix is passing on that height.

15 Competitors Left in Decathlon High Jump

Kurt Felix of Boise State is the only one who hasn't cleared a height that is left.

Felix Passing on High Jump Until 6-9 3/4

Kurt is not entering the decathlon high jump competition until the bar is at 6-8 3/4.  If he has a bad three jumps, he gets zero points in the event.  It's a bit of a risky proposition.  Usually, it's good to at least clear a lower height to ensure points.  Felix no doubt is trying to conserve his energy--we hope it pays off.

Felix Finishes 12th in Decathlon Shot Put

Kurt fouled on his third and final shot put and finished 12th in that portion of the decathlon's third event.

Here are the standings after three events:

1.  Kevin Lazas, Arkansas 2,477 points
2.  Kurt Felix, Boise State 2,465
3.  Gunnar Nixon, Arkansas 2,462
4.  Bjorn Barrefors, Nebraska 2,461
5.  Isaac Murphy, Texas 2,412

Felix had 2,416 at this juncture at the MWC Championships, so he is still ahead of pace, but nowhere near where he needs to be to win the decathlon.  His first day is always far better than his second so to win the championship, Kurt needs to have a commanding lead on the field after five events.

Up next, the high jump, one of Felix's best events.  He will need to clear 7 feet to hope to finish high.  Felix jumped 6-11 at the MWC Championships to score 906 points.

Felix Drops to 11th in Decathlon Shot Put

A better throw of 41-5 3/4 for Kurt Felix didn't move him up in the standings; in fact, he slipped to 9th after two throws.  Kevin Lazus (46-2 3/4) is in second in the shot and will overtake Felix in the Decathlon standings unless Kurt can muster a better throw.  Bjorn Barrefors will also pass Felix with no further upgrade from Kurt.

Felix in 7th in Decathlon Shot Put After One Throw

Felix won this portion of the decathlon at the MWC Championships with a throw of 45-1.  He's up against much tougher competitors now, and that throw likely won't place him in the top five.  After one attempt, Felix is in 7th with a throw of 41-3 3/4.  Heath Nickles of Ohio State, who so far has been a non-factor in the decathlon, leads this event with a throw of 46-5 1/2.  Gunnar Nixon is in fifth (42-2) and no other leaders are ahead of Felix thus far.

The shot traditionally is one of the weakest events for decathletes, who usually have to be quick and be good jumpers.

Felix Wins Decathlon Long Jump at NCAA Championships

Kurt's first jump held up against the best the nation had to offer, and Felix won the event with a jump of 24-feet, 3 and a half inches.  He has 1,793 points after two events, 90 points above his pace at the Mountain West Championships.

Kevin Lazas of Arkansas crept up to three inches behind Felix to finish second.  Nebraska's Bjorn Barrefors had a best of 23-10, Gunnar Nixon of Arkansas (23-9 1/2) was fourth, and Japheth Cato of Wisconsin slipped to fifth (23-9 1/2).

After two events:

1.  Kurt Felix, Boise State 1,793 points
2.  Bjorn Barrefors, Nebraska 1,752
3.  Gunnar Nixon, Arkansas 1,750
4.  Isaac Murphy, Texas 1,748
5.  Kevin Lazas, Arkansas 1,743

Up next for the decathletes, the shot put, a good but not great event for Felix.  He won at the MWC Championships, but only received 713 points.  He'll have to do better to have hopes for a Top 5 finish in the decathlon.

Still gotta' get over that pole vault bar though...

Matt Miller is the 2011-2012 Boise State Freshman of the Year

Wide receiver Matt Miller, who set freshman receiving records for receptions, yards and touchdowns last fall, has been named Bronco Freshman of the Year in the annual voting by Bronco fans on Blue Through and Through.

Miller received a solid 54% of the vote to win the honor.  Swimmer Jessica Bottelberghe was second with 17%, basketball's Anthony Drmic had 14% support, third baseman Jordan Kreiger, a starter for the women's softball team, garnered 9% support and long-distance runner Marissa VanderMalle captured 6% of the Bronco vote.

The vote for Bronco Male and Female Athletes of the Year will be next week, since Kurt Felix and Emma Bates are competing this week in the NCAA National Track Championships.

Congratulations to all these fine freshmen for showing us that you can excel in your first year at Boise State!

Felix Continues to Lead Long Jump After Two Attempts

Felix has a six-inch lead on another great decathlete, Japheth Cato of Wisconsin, with three Arkansas decathletes--Gunnar Nixon, Kevin Lazas and Terry Prentice, rounding out the Top 5.

Felix Leaps 24-3 and a half

On Kurt's first attempt in Des Moines, Iowa, he jumped 24-3 1/2, already getting a minimum of 910 points in the event.  That's already better than his best jump at the Mountain West Championships (23-10.25, which netted him 878 points).  Still to come today:  the high jump, shot put and 400-meters.  A long ways to go, but Felix is doing well so far.  Still gotta' get over that bar in the pole vault...

Felix Gets 2nd in Decathlon 100-Meter Dash at NCAA Championships

This is a very good result for Felix, in not one of his best events.  Kurt ran an 11.16 at the Mountain West Championships, which gave him 825 points.  Felix shocked the field by winning his heat and finishing second overall.  Someone's been training...

The long jump is underway.

Men's Decathlon100 Meter Dash

 PlaceAthlete NameYrAffiliationTimeWindPointsHeat(Pl)
 1Isaac MurphyJRTexas10.76+0.4 9153 (1)
 2Kurt FelixSRBoise State10.90+3.0 8832 (1)
 3Nick HuberSRCornell10.91+3.0 8812 (2)
 4Gunnar NixonFRArkansas10.93+3.0 876[10.930]2 (3)
 4Bjorn BarreforsJRNebraska10.93+3.2 876[10.930]1 (1)
 6Terry PrenticeSRArkansas10.94+3.0 8742 (4)
 7Jeff MohlJRMontana State10.99+0.4 8633 (2)
 8Thomas FitzSimonsSRMount St. Mary's11.02+3.0 8562 (5)
 9Japheth CatoSOWisconsin11.03+0.4 8543 (3)
 10Kevin LazasSOArkansas11.05+0.4 8503 (4)
 11Petter OlsonFRTexas11.08+0.4 8433 (5)
 12Clayton ChaneyJRRice11.09+3.0 841[11.084]2 (6)
 13Gonzalo BarroilhetSRFlorida State11.09+0.4 841[11.086]3 (6)
 14Marcus NilssonSOUCLA11.12+3.2 8341 (2)
 15Romain MartinJRTexas-Arlington11.13+0.4 8323 (7)
 16Dakotah KeysFROregon11.14+3.2 830[11.137]1 (3)
 17Tomas KirieliusJRKansas State11.14+3.2 830[11.139]1 (4)
 18Richard YorkJRNew Mexico11.28+0.4 7993 (8)
 19Daniel GoorisJRNorthern Iowa11.31+3.2 7931 (5)
 20Dave GrzesiakSRWisconsin11.32+3.2 7911 (6)
 21Heath NicklesJROhio State11.34+3.2 7861 (7)
 22Jack SzmandaJRMinnesota11.42+3.0 7692 (7)
 23Jake WaruchJRConnecticut20.82+3.0 2 (8)
 DNSDerek MastersonJRUC Santa Barbara