2010 Big Ten Outdoor Track and Field Season in Review
June 30, 2010
Three Big Ten student-athletes were crowned national champions at the 2010 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships on historic Hayward Track at the University of Oregon in Eugene, Ore. Illinois' Andrew Riley took home top honors in the 110-meter hurdles, Indiana's Derek Drouin was victorious in the high jump, and Penn State's Bridget Franek won the gold medal in the 3,000-meter steeplechase.
Anchored by Franek's effort, the Penn State women placed fourth in the team standings. The Nittany Lions, who also received points from Aleesha Barber (3rd in the 100-meter hurdles), Karlee McQuillen (3rd in the javelin), Fawn Dorr (4th in the 400-meter hurdles), Shavon Greaves (7th in the 200-meter dash), and the fourth-place 4x400-meter relay team, recorded 34 points at the championship meet. Indiana recorded the highest conference finish on the men's side, placing 20th with 13.5 total points.
The Texas A&M men and women each won their second straight championships. The Aggie women recorded 72 points, ahead of Oregon (57), Florida (40) and Penn State. The Aggie men held on for a one-point win over Florida 55-54. Oregon was third (45) and Arizona State was fourth (37).
Before qualifying for the NCAA Championships, the conference squads converged on the Indiana University campus and the Robert C. Haugh Track and Field Complex for the 2010 Big Ten Outdoor Track and Field Championships. The defending men's champion, Minnesota, and women's champion, Penn State, successfully retained their titles as the conference's top teams by winning their respective Big Ten Championships.
The Gopher men led from start to finish, totaling 145 points to outlast second-place Wisconsin (124) and third-place Ohio State (115). The Nittany Lion women took the lead midway through the final day of competition and held on to win their third-straight team championship with 133.5 points. Minnesota finished in second place with 123 points, while Wisconsin was third with 101.5. Both programs were led by Big Ten Coach of the Year honorees, Steve Plasencia for the Minnesota men and Beth Alford-Sullivan for the Penn State women.
Following the Big Ten Championships, the conference honored its individual award winners. On the men's side, Illinois' Riley was named Track Athlete of the Year and of the Championships, Indiana's Drouin was named Field Athlete of the Year and of the Championships, and Penn State's Casimir Loxsom won Freshman of the Year honors. For the women, Indiana's Faith Sherrill won Field Athlete of the Year and of the Championships honors, Illinois' Angela Bizzarri won Track Athlete of the Year laurels, Penn State's Dorr claimed Track Athlete of the Championships honors, and Michigan's Erin Pendleton won Freshman of the Year distinction.