Week #15: Big Ten Championships Time!

May 9, 2011

Fri-Sun., May 13-15 -- at Big Ten Outdoor Championships (Iowa City, Iowa)
Live Results | Championships Central | Schedule of Events

The University of Michigan men's track and field team and the conference's other nine teams converge on Iowa City, Iowa, this week for the 2011 Big Ten Outdoor Championships, held at the Francis X. Cretzmeyer Track. The three-day event begins at 11 a.m. CDT on Friday (May 13) and concludes at the same time on Sunday (May 15).

The 2011 Big Ten Outdoor Championships, running from May 13-15 in Iowa City, will be shown on the Big Ten Network on Sunday, May 22, at 1 p.m.

Here's is how Michigan has fared at the Big Ten Outdoor Championships over the last decade:

Year Team Champions
2001 T-8th Mike Wisniewski - 10,000m
2002 9th Alan Webb - 1,500m
2003 7th Nate Brannen - 800m
    Nick Willis - 1,500m#
2004 8th Andrew Ellerton - 800m
2005 6th Nick Willis - 5,000m
2006 T-5th Jeff Porter - 110m Hurdles
2007 3rd Andrew Ellerton - 800m
    Michael Whitehead - Triple Jump
    Jeff Porter - 110m Hurdles
    Justin Switzer - 1,500m
2008 1st Adam Harris - 200m*
    Dan Harmsen - 400m Hurdles
    Frank Shotwell - Decathlon
    4x100m Relay
    4x400m Relay
2009 3rd Adam Harris - 100m, 200m
    Carl Buchanon - 400m Hurdles
2010 10th None

# Named Big Ten Freshman of the Year
* Named Big Ten Athlete of the Year

Carl Buchanon and junior Frank Shotwell (Medina, Ohio/Medina) are the only current members on the U-M roster that have won previous Big Ten individual championships. Buchanon won the 2009 400-meter hurdles title and Shotwell won the decathlon in 2008.

Michigan last won the outdoor team championship in 2008. All four seniors -- Buchanon, Shotwell, Nick McCampbell and David St. Amant -- were a part of that team.

Michigan finished 10th at the 2010 Big Ten Outdoor Championships, held at Indiana. Frank Shotwell set a new school record in the decathlon, falling short of winning the conference title by two points (7,379 pts.). He was Michigan's lone representative on the All-Big Ten team, earning second team accolades.

Three Wolverines -- Joe Strizich, Taylor Voice and Robert Peddlar -- will be named All-Americans by the National Strength and Conditioning Association. An official release, encompassing all NSCA All-Americans at Michigan, will be put out at a later date.

Michigan hosted the U-M Len Paddock Invitational at Ferry Field last weekend, and had six student-athletes win events. Freshman Ali Arastu won the 400-meter dash and the 400-meter intermediate hurdles. Other event winners included Brendon Blacklaws in the 1,500-meter run, Austin DeWildt in the pole vault, Cody Riffle in the discus, Bradley James in the high jump and Nick McCampbell in the 110-meter high hurdles.

In all, the Wolverines recorded 16 season-best times/marks at the two-day event.

[ Recap ]

The NCAA East Region Preliminary Round (held at Indiana) runs from May 26-28. To qualify, the top 48 athletes in each event (in descending order) will participate in two rounds (first round and quarterfinals) during the Preliminary Round. Twelve competitors from each individual event and 12 teams from each relay event will advance from each Preliminary Championship competition to the NCAA Championships. There are no qualifying marks used during the outdoor season.


TOP TIMES/MARKS (Outdoor Only)
100-meter Dash: 10.54, Matthew Campbell
200-meter Dash: 21.28, Matthew Campbell
400-meter Dash: 47.43, Nick Neuman
800-meter Run: 1:54.66, Nick Thomas
1,500-meter Run: 3:47.60, Brendon Blacklaws
3,000-meter Run: 8:31.52, Bobby Aprill
5,000-meter Run: 13:59.53, Craig Forys
10,000-meter Run: 29:53.57, Bobby Aprill
110-meter Hurdles: 14.11, Nick McCampbell
400-meter Hurdles: 51.73, Ali Arastu
3,000-meter Steeplechase: 9:08.52, Craig Forys
4x100-meter Relay: 41.03, Nick McCampbell, Matthew Campbell, Aaron Taylor, Justin Clarke
4x400-meter Relay: 3:08.43, Nick Neuman, Matthew Campbell, Aaron Taylor, Ali Arastu
High Jump: 2.11 meters (6-11 ft.), Bradley James
Pole Vault: 5.20 meters (17-0 3/4 ft.), Austin DeWildt
Long Jump: 7.36 meters (24-1 3/4 ft.), Robert Peddlar
Triple Jump: 14.52 meters (47-7 3/4 ft.), Erik Braun
Shot Put: 18.40 meters (60-4 1/2 ft.), Cody Riffle
Discus: 54.71 meters (179-6 ft.), Cody Riffle
Hammer: 54.19 meters (179-3 ft.), Ethan Dennis
Javelin: 55.23 meters (181-2 ft.), Joe Strizich
Decathlon: 6,774 points, Kurt Reichenbach

[ Outdoor Team Bests ]

With the Big Ten Outdoor Championships coming up in less than three weeks, here are the following Michigan athletes rank who rank among the top 10 on the outdoor performance lists for their event(s):

Event Big Ten Leader Michigan Athlete (Rank)
100m Dash 10.35 - Kind Butler (Indiana) 10.53 - Matthew Campbell (T9)
200m Dash 20.87 - Justin Austin (Iowa) 21.28 - Matthew Campbell (7)
    21.36 - Aaron Taylor (T9)
400m Dash 45.81 - Thomas Murdaugh (Ohio State) 47.43 - Nick Neuman (10)
5,000m Run 13:44.98 - Mohammed Ahmed (Wisconsin) 13:59.53 - Craig Forys (5)
    14:15.43 - Bobby Aprill (10)
10,000m Run 28:43.34 - Elliot Krause (Wisconsin) 29:53.57 - Bobby Aprill (7)
110m Hurdles 13.61 - Andrew Riley (Illinois) 14.11 - Nick McCampbell (5)
    14.28 - Erick Gavin (9)
400m Hurdles 50.73 - Cody Wisslead (Illinois) 51.73 - Ali Arastu (5)
4x100m Relay 39.17 - Illinois 41.03 (7)
4x400m Relay 3:07.13 - Ohio State 3:08.43 (4)
High Jump 7-3 3/4 ft. - Derek Drouin (Indiana) 6-11 ft. - Bradley James (4)
Pole Vault 17-7 3/4 ft. - Derek Peterson (Minnesota) 17-0 3/4 ft. - Austin DeWildt (T4)
    16-8 3/4 ft. - Jack Greenlee (T9)
Triple Jump 51-10 1/2 ft. - Hanif Johnson (Penn State) 47-7 3/4 ft. - Erik Braun (10)
Shot Put 62-0 1/2 ft. - Joe Kovacs (Penn State) 60-4 1/2 ft. - Cody Riffle (3)
Discus 192-6 ft. - Danny Block (Wisconsin) 179-6 ft. - Cody Riffle (5)
Javelin 245-8 ft. - Matt Byers (Iowa) 181-2 ft. - Joe Strizich (10)
Decathlon 7,384 points - Brock Spandl (Minnesota) 6,774 points - Kurt Reichenbach (10)

The men's track and field team held its postseason banquet following the U-M Len Paddock Invitational on Saturday, and inducted eight former track and field greats into its Men's Track and Field Hall of Fame. The inductees are Nelson Kellogg (1901-04), John Landowski (1922), Holly Campbell (1927-30), Ralph Schwarzkopf (1938-40), John Ross (1952-54), Dan Heikkinen (1977-81), Jon Royce (1993-96) and head coach Keene Fitzpatrick (1901-11).

Ross, Heikkinen and Royce were in attendance at the banquet, each receiving a commemorative medal.

Michigan finished ninth at the Big Ten Indoor Championships, held Feb. 26-27 at The Armory in Champaign, Ill. Robert Peddlar was the team's highest point-scorer, finishing fifth in the long jump and seventh in the triple jump. Michigan did not send any competitors to the NCAA Championships.

Beginning with the 2011 indoor season, USTFCCCA All-America honors will be assigned into first and second teams for all events, both individual and relays. Those individuals and relays that score any portion of a team point at the NCAA Championships will earn USTFCCCA first team All-America honors. The individuals and relays that place between nine and 16 overall will earn USTFCCCA second team All-America honors. Those who participate in at least a round of the finals site for an NCAA Championship will be listed as honorable mention All-America.

The track and field team returns to permanent captains for the outdoor season, but will continue to pick Captains of the Week, as it did during the indoor season. The permanent captains, as selected by team vote, are Carl Buchanon, Craig Forys, Robert Peddlar and Frank Shotwell.

The four outdoor captains will handle responsibilities for the remainder of the outdoor season.

Jan. 8 -- David St. Amant, Erik Braun
Jan. 15 -- Robert Peddlar, Craig Forys
Jan. 22 -- Nick McCampbell, Taylor Voice
Feb. 5 -- Jack Greenlee, Matthew Campbell
Feb. 11 -- Brendon Blacklaws, Kurt Reichenbach
Feb. 19 -- Austin DeWildt, Troy Sneller
Feb. 26 -- Carl Buchanon, Nick McCampbell, David St. Amant

Permanent Team Captains: Carl Buchanon, Craig Forys, Robert Peddlar, Frank Shotwell
March 25 -- Ethan Dennis, Aaron Taylor
April 7 -- Zach Ornelas, Joe Strizich
April 17 -- Bobby Aprill, Nick Neuman
April 22 -- Simon Wenet, Nick Thomas

Each week, the coaching staff will select a few student-athletes who performed the best as "Wolverines of the Week":

Jan. 8 (Eastern Michigan Invitational): Erik Braun, Justin Clarke, Ed Hur, Bradley James, Cody Riffle
Jan. 15 ("The Dual" at Ohio State): Ethan Dennis, Jack Greenlee, Craig Forys, Carl Buchanon
Jan. 22 (Simmons-Harvey Invitational): Erik Braun, Justin Clarke
Feb. 4-5 (ND Meyo Invitational): Robert Peddlar, Ali Arastu, Erick Gavin
Feb. 11-12 (GVSU Big Meet): Austin DeWildt, Nick McCampbell, Matthew Campbell
Feb. 19 (Silverston Invitational): Troy Sneller, Herman Washington, Erik Braun

March 25 (FSU Relays, Stanford Invitational): Ali Arastu, Nick Neuman, Nick Kern
April 7-9 (UCLA Rafer Johnson Invitational): Cody Riffle, Ali Arastu, 4x400 Relay Team (Arastu, Matthew Campbell, Aaron Taylor, Troy Sneller)
April 17 ("The Dual" vs. Ohio State): Austin DeWildt, Cody Riffle, Matthew Campbell, Brendon Blacklaws, Dallas Bowden
April 22-23 (EMU Twilight Invitational): Troy Sneller, Aaron Taylor
April 28-30 (Penn Relays): Cody Riffle, 4x120-yard Shuttle Hurdles Relay (Frank Shotwell, Herman Washington, Nick McCampbell, Erick Gavin) 4x400 Relay Team (Nick Neuman, Aaron Taylor, Matthew Campbell, Ali Arastu)

Michigan has an abundance of youth on the 2011 roster. Out of the 46 student-athletes on this year's track and field roster, 36 of them are three or more years of eligibility remaining, giving the Wolverines one of the youngest rosters in the country. Here's a look at the roster, broken down by class:

Freshmen: 23
Sophomores: 13
Juniors: 6
Seniors: 4

On Feb. 15, head coach Fred LaPlante announced the signings of four student-athletes to National Letters of Intent for the 2011-12 season. The signees include throwers Brad Bolton (Lake Forest, Calif./El Toro) and Derek Sievers (Byron Center, Mich./Byron Center), distance runner Scott Albaugh (Waterford, Mich./Waterford Mott) and sprinter Philip Washington III (West Bloomfield, Mich./West Bloomfield).

Two more were added to the group on April 12, as head cross country coach and track assistant coach Alex Gibby announced the signings distance runners Mason Ferlic (Maplewood, Minn./Mounds Park Academy) and Jeff Sattler (Byron Center, Mich./Byron Center) to NLIs.

Bolton is ranked as the nation's top hammer thrower, while Sievers, Sattler, Albaugh and Washington III are all Michigan state champions, while Ferlic holds a Minnesota state championships in cross country.

[ Signing Day Release (Feb. 15) ] [ Two More Sign NLIs (April 12) ]

Head coach Fred LaPlante is in his third season at the helm of the Wolverines and is joined by two new assistant coaches and three new volunteer assistants. Alex Gibby, the head coach of the men's cross country team, will oversee the distance runners. Gibby was hired last summer from William & Mary to replace former men's track and field head coach Ron Warhurst, who retired after an illustrious 36-year coaching career at Michigan. The other assistant is Mohamad Saatara, oversees the field events in his first year after coming over from Northern Arizona.

Volunteer assistants Christo Landry and Colin Leak, former distance runners under Gibby at William & Mary, work under Gibby in the distance group. Shean Conlon (pole vault) is also new, while former volunteer assistant Tiberia Patterson re-joins the staff and will assist LaPlante with the sprints/hurdles group.


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TRACK TALK WITH Frank Shotwell
He's back! Fifth-year senior decathlete Frank Shotwell will once again be blogging during the season for MGoBlue.com. Check back to the site towards the end of each week to see what goes on inside the Michigan men's track and field team from one of its most experienced competitors!

For the second year in a row, the University of Michigan athletics department will no longer print media guides. U-M fans and media can still obtain all the information they're used to, only now it's available online. If you're looking for in-depth historical information, statistics, records, archives, etc., the Record Book is what you'll need and it was just added to MGoBlue.com. For more of a general overview of a team, the staff and student-athletes, check out the Yearbook.

[ 2010-11 Men's Track & Field Yearbook ]

Thu-Sat., May 26-28 -- at NCAA East Region Preliminary Round (Bloomington, Ind.)

Contact: Brad Rudner (734) 763-4423