Oregon Preview

Today's Oregon Preview is very unusual in that many of Oregon's and Oregon Track Club's top athletes will be competing. The most surprising part is the high level of participation of the Duck women's NCAA team championship and the men's runner-up team.

The men's 1,500 meters is the feature event today. Sophomore Matthew Centrowitz will run his first track race since running in the preliminaries of the NCAA meet last June while he had a stress fracture in the third metatarsal of his foot. Graduate student transfer Michael Maag will run his first race as a Duck. Senior Jordan McNamara was an NCAA finalist in the 1,500 meters last year and broke four minutes for the mile during the summer. All three did not run for the Ducks indoors. Oregon Track Club (OTC) Elite is scheduled to enter 2009 US fourth-place finisher Stephen Pifer and 800 Olympian Christian Smith. The top-five entrants have all run between 3:36 and 3:42. Oregon freshman Ben Dejarnette will make his outdoor debut and looked very good indoors after running a 4:06.96 mile indoors.

OTC Elite will also run in a special 1,000 meters for men and women with national and international-level competitors Tyler Mulder, Mark Wieczorek, Christian Smith, and Stephen Pifer on the men's side and Geena Gall, Sally Kipyego and Jemma Simpson competing. The high jump will also be a loaded event with national level participant and ex-Duck Kyley Johnson competing for the Bowerman AC, Duck Danny Marconi, and first time Duck high jumper David Klech (pr of 7-0 ¾ from high school). Oregon State will have their first track outdoor participants and potential west region qualifiers Obum Gwacham and Jordan Bishop.

The Ducks women will enter NCAA 200-meter indoors fourth place finisher Amber Purvis and 60-meter participant Mandy White in the 400 meters. Purvis was the anchor of the NCAA indoor 4x400 meter relay. Her teammate, Jamesha Youngblood, on that relay will run the 400 hurdles, an event she gained all-American status in high school. Expected Duck relay members for the NCAA outdoor championships will participate in both relays for the women's teams. Four-time NCAA champion Ashton Eaton will participate in the Discus and Javelin and possibly the relays and two-time NCAA champion Brianne Thiesen will participate in the shot put and all of the Duck combined athletes will participate in throwing events.

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