Pepsi Men's Preview

The Pepsi Meet rankings are based on those that can score. Extra competitors are not ranked. This is a quick review of the top four entrants in each event:

Men's scoring is based on 9,7,6,5,4,3,2,1 for individual events. Relays are scored 9,7,6,5.

To see all competitors: Pepsi Invitational Men .

100 (regional qualifying 10.50)
Ashton Eaton has already shown his immense potential after provisional qualifying marks indoors and outdoors in the multi events. Mike Myers of Kansas State already has a Personal Record (PR) by a tenth after competing in the NAIA championships in the 100 and 200 last year for Graceland University. Roy Alugbue was tenth at last year's P-10 meet and was the South Coast CC 100 and 200 champ in 2005. Phil Alexander was a four-time NWAACC champ in different events. This race is missing two highly ranked USC freshman that were hurt at the end of last season, Jamere Holland and Ahmad Rashad (not related to former Oregon football player).

200 (21.19)
Ahmad Rashad was the national indoor high school 60-meter champ. In 2005 he won the Michigan Lower Peninsula 100 and 200 championships. Myer has PR'd by .8 sec already this year. Alexander and Marcus Dillon moved to fifth all time indoors for Oregon and have run well to start the year. Alexander won four NWAACC championships for Lane CC and was the state champion while at McNary (Salem) high school. Marcus Dillon decided to run at Lane last year (NWAACC champ) after taking some time off after finishing second in the indoor national JC championship 400.

400 (47.20)
Lionel Larry had a great finish to last season with a pr at the US championships and a sixth place finish at the NCAA meet. He currently has the second fastest time of NCAA competitors. Alex Harcourt ran in the NCAA indoor meet after beating 2005 NC Champion Darrold Williamson earlier in the year. His inconsistent success is due to having only 4 years of track experience. This year, Marcus Dillon won the MPSF indoors 400-meter title but was disqualified after the race. Last year Chad Barlow was second in the Colorado 5A state championships. Missing in this race is Nate Anderson, in his first year at USC after winning the 200 and 400 for Benson Tech in 2005.

800 (1:50.40)
Ryan Brown won at the NC indoor meet in March after winning the outdoor title last June, has very good 400 speed and a great kick. Mike McGrath was fifth in last year's Pac-10 meet. In 2004 he had the top US high school time. Brian Govier was the 2003 Washington 2A state cross-country champion. This is the second year of running for Andrew Wheating. In his first year he finished 12th in the US Junior 1500 meters. Missing from this race are Duane Solomon, the Pac-10 and West Region champ and his teammate and runner-up in both of those races, Raphael Asafo-Agyei. Also missing is Austin Abbott who finished 4th at the NCAA indoor 800 this year.

1500 (3:47.50)
Shadrack Kiptoo-Biwott was second in this event at the MWC championships in 2005 and was tenth at the Midwest regional in his freshman year. AJ Acosta was the US Jr. champion last year and was thirteenth in the NC indoor mile this year. Jon Hickey has been recovering from cancer after a promising freshman year. He ran a 4:06 mile indoors this year. His teammate, Matt Owen, is a regular just like him on the cross-country team. Missing from this race is Irec Sekretarski has impressive credentials and follows the Polish pipeline USC has created to get pac-10 and one NCAA women's champions in the middle distances.

Steeple (9:07.00)
For most of the runners this is a great opportunity to get a qualifying mark. Chris Winter is a 2-time World Junior XC and Steeple runner for Canada. He is the defending champion and finished fourth in the Pac-10 last year and barely missed out on the NCAA meet last year (seventh went to NCAA and he was eighth). Brad Liber was sixth last year in the Pac-10 meet and was third in this meet last year. Scott Wall missed most of last year but has rebounded well with significant PR's under his impressive freshman year marks. Carl Moe is a 2-time All-American in the distance medley after anchoring Washington indoors. He is a former Gatorade Athlete of the Year for the state of Washington.

5000 (14:12)
This is early in the season for most runners and this is another good opportunity for the runners to get regional qualifying marks. Galen Rupp ran a controlled pace 10,000 at the Stanford Invitational so he could get an automatic qualifying mark. After barely missing his pr in this event he scored two more All-American awards indoors. He now only follows Steve Prefontaine (8) and Rudy Chapa (7) with six All-American awards. Shadrack Kiptoo-Biwott ran his first 10,000 at the Stanford Invitational and scored a provisional qualifying mark. His pr from last year's invite makes him a contender at this year's pac-10 meet. Kelly Spady was the 2004 Washington State cross-country champ and was a top 7-member for the UW XC team. Kevin Peters competed for the second year in a row at the NCAA meet for the UW cross-country team and two consecutive years in the 10,000 at the Pac-10 meet.

110 hurdles (14.30)
Kai Kelly has already run the ninth fastest collegiate time this year. Last year he finished fourth in the Pac-10 and was fifth in 2005. The last two years he has competed at the NCAA meet. Logan Taylor has PR'd by .2 seconds this year after competing in the Pac-10 and Western Region last year. Jared Huske is scaring the Regional qualifying mark and confirming his high school potential after being the 2005 Nike outdoor and Junior Olympic champ. James Frederickson was seventh last year and third the year before at the Big West Conference meet. He was also fifth at the US Jr. meet in 2005.

400 hurdles (52.51)
Kelly is close to PR'ing in this event and is ranked fourth in the country. Frederickson was the 2005 Big West champ and was a West Region competitor last year and in 2005. Huske was a Pac-10 and West Regional competitor last year in this event. Sheldon Evans ran briefly in his freshman year in this event in 2005 with great success and is showing that great potential again after redshirting last year.

4x100 meters (40.66)
USC has many new legs on this relay but the ability of the freshman is among the best in the nation. Oregon has many new legs due to injuries to the top two returnees but the new competitors have significant ability. Kansas State has some experience working together and a very good new relay leg in Myer. Washington has lost most of its legs from last year.

4x400 meters (3:10.00)
USC has lost only one leg from last year's fourth place NCAA team and Pac-10 champion. There are two very good freshman replacements to choose from. Oregon has had to replace all four legs from the Pac-10 runner-up squad and NCAA sixth place team but the talent is there to make the NCAA meet. Washington has lost three of the legs from last years NCAA eighth place team and third place Pac-10 team but has two very good legs in Harcourt and Brown. Kansas State has the Everett (Tevan and Tevas) twins but not much else surrounding them.

High Jump (6-10 ¾)
Potentially this is one of the top events of the competition. As a sophomore, Scott Sellers is already a 3-time All-American. In high school he was the track and field news athlete of the year and holds the high school record. His teammate, Kyle Lancaster, has been a two-time NCAA runner up and 5 time all-American in this event. Norris Frederick had a personal-record-indoors and moved closer to scoring on the championship level. Missing from this event is Manjula Wijesekara, a 2004 Olympian for Sri Lanka and the fifth best returning NCAA high jumper.

Pole Vault (16-6 ¾)
McKane Lee PR'd this winter after redshirting last year and moved to fourth all-time indoors for the Huskies. Scott Roth was the top high school vaulter in 2005 and second in 2006 and PR'd by eight inches early in the indoor vault season but hasn't been within 11 inches of that mark since then. David Moore looks like a confident vaulter again (eighth '05 Pac-10) and has consistently vaulted near his pr. Bryce Bergman was fourth in last years Big 12 meet. Missing from the invite will be four-time NCAA Champion Tommy Skipper (No. 9 all-time NCAA) who has matched Steve Prefontaine's Oregon mark of four individual titles. A balky calf will determine whether he gets a fifth.

Long Jump (24-1)
Norris Frederick is a three time all-American and finally scored at the NCAA meet for the Huskies this winter with a sixth place finish and last year won his first Pac-10 title. Ashton Eaton is a 2-time Oregon 4A State champion (LJ and 400). Indoors he already has PR'd in the long jump and became an indoor and outdoor NCAA provisional qualifier in the multi-events. Alexey Shkuratov was a Pac-10 competitor in the long jump and in 2005 he was the under 19 Belarus champion in this event. Last year Adam Fretwell was a NCAA provisional qualifier in the Decathlon. In high school he was third in the Texas state championships in this event.

Triple Jump (49-2 ½)
Sellers was a Big 12 competitor in this event. William Pua'a is a decathlete and was the Hawaii state champion last year in the pole vault. Alexey Shkuratov was sixth in the Pac-10 decathlon last year. Braden Weeks was a Washington 3A state competitor last year.

Shot Put (55-1 ½)
9 of the competitors have NCAA regional qualifying marks. Noah Bryant just won the NCAA indoor title with an indoor school record. He has made a great recovery since he had his thrown hammer bounce of the cage and hit him in the face in 2005. Currently ranked fourth nationally, William Denbo is a two time Pac-10 scorer and last year went to the NCAA championships. TJ Staab was sixth at last year's Big 12 indoor meet and redshirted outdoors. In 2005 he finished 14th at the NCAA meet. Mart Israel has been an international junior competitor in the discus since 2003.

Discus (169-7)
Israel has been in the top 40 in the world the last two years. In 2003 he was eighth in the World University Games and seventh in the 2002 World Junior championships. Aaron Dan is a redshirt freshman already ranked ninth collegiately. In 2005 he was 2nd in the Discus at the California State Championships and third in the Shot Put. Noah Bryant is only nine inches off his PR so far this year. Eric Thomas was a 3-time Kansas Shot Put and Discus state champion (6 total).

Hammer (182-5)
Adam Midles has already PR'd by seven feet this year and is second collegiately this year. He is still No. 5 returning collegian. He finished sixth last year and seventh the year before at the NCAA's meet. Brian Richotte is the sixth best returning competitor and is a 2x all-American. Martin Bingisser was 12th at last year's NCAA meet after having his third straight 3rd place finish at the Pac-10 meet. Noah Bryant has pr'd by 11 feet this year and has a chance to make the NCAA meet this year after moving to the 12th ranked returning thrower.

Javelin (202-1)
Ryan Brandel has thrown an eleven foot pr this year and is ranked sixth collegiately. Kyle Seiler competed at the NCAA meet last year after finishing 4th at the MW region. Alex Wolff redshirted last year after winning the 2005 Oregon 4A State Championship. Adam Hoffman has PR'd 10 feet this year and is just 6 feet off the regional qualifying standard.

With reasonable doubles by the USC athletes my predictions would have expected USC to win by 27 points over Oregon. With many athletes not competing for USC, Oregon should have a 21-point victory over Washington.

The top events in this competition should be the high jump and all four throws. The 3,000-meter steeplechase and 5,000 meters will be good opportunities to get NCAA regional qualifying marks and many athletes have been moved into events to get those marks

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