ISU men’s track, field switching gears for outdoor season

Kyle Kubiak

With the Big 12 Indoor Championships coming to a close Saturday evening, that also meant the majority of ISU’s men’s track and field team saw its indoor season end.

Only a few athletes will continue the indoor season with the NCAA Indoor Championships on Mar. 14-15. The remainder of the team will focus their attention towards their outdoor season, which is scheduled to begin the weekend after the indoor championships in Tempe, Ariz.

“I’m excited to still be going for the indoor. I feel strong,” said All-Big 12 runner Edward Kemboi about being one of the ISU athletes to go to NCAA’s.

For the runners that will be transitioning towards outdoor, a change of climate is in store with the majority of the Cyclones’ meets being located on the west coast.

Sophomore sprinter Jared Ingram, who predominantly runs the 60-meter dash, which is only held during the indoor season, says he “prefers outdoor.”

Another change in pace with the transition from the indoor season to the outdoor will be the loss of a home-track advantage. During Iowa State’s indoor season, it competed at the Lied Recreation Center in four out of its 10 meets.

Despite a new track, Iowa State is not on schedule to host a home outdoor meet. The closest meets will both be held in Des Moines at Drake for the Jim Duncan Invitational and the highly touted Drake Relays.

Then for the field event participants, the transition to the outdoor season will bring new events and dynamics. Specifically for the throwers, where the weight throw will be replaced by the hammer throw.

ISU thrower Henry Kelley expects some challenge with switching events, but is hoping to take it all in stride after placing sixth in the weight throw at Big 12 indoors.

“I think the transition between the outdoor and indoor will be smooth,” Kelley said. “We have been mainly trained through indoor with hopes to translate over and perform well in the outdoor.”

The Cyclones hope the new staff will also allow for their peaks to hit towards the end of the outdoor season, instead of too soon like they believed it did last year.

“I feel a lot more fresh,” Ingram said. “This new staff has a focus more towards strength, which is only going to allow us to get faster as the season goes on.”

Whether or not the mindset for outdoor season starts tomorrow or not for all the ISU runners, all of the goals are to build off the high finishes they received in their final indoor meet.

“My athletic director told me ‘Ed, I think cross-country is benefiting you right now’ and I believe I will see an even bigger improvement once outdoor starts for me later,” Kemboi said, speaking of ISU athletic director Jamie Pollard.