Illini No. 14 in USTFCCCA National Poll
April 29, 2014
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. -- The Fighting Illini men's track and field team has earned a No. 14 ranking in the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) national poll released on Tuesday. The ranking comes after the Illini captured a share of the second-annual HyVee Cup at the Drake Relays over the weekend.
The Orange and Blue totaled 34 points at the Drake Relays to tie with then-ranked No. 4 Arkansas as Hy-Vee Cup Co-Champions. Illinois competed in five relays and finished the event with two runner-up finishes and placed third in the other three relays. The 4x400m relay team placed second with the seventh-fastest time in the nation, while the 4x100m team clocked the eighth-fastest time in the country to place third. Both teams also hold the fastest times in the Big Ten this season. Illinois also crowned an individual champion as Vanier Joseph won the 110m hurdles title for the second year in a row.
Illinois' No. 14 ranking in the week four poll is the highest mid-season ranking in program history. Previously, the highest mid-season ranking came in week five of the 2013 season when the Illini earned a No. 22 spot. The highest USTFCCCA ranking in program history came in 2012, when the Orange and Blue placed 11th at the NCAA Outdoor Championships.
The Illini join three other Big Ten schools in the national rankings, trailing only No. 11 Nebraska. Wisconsin, who captured the 2014 Big Ten Indoor Championships team title in March, grabbed the No. 18 spot while Penn State is ranked No. 19.
Illinois will compete in its final meets of the regular season this weekend as the squad splits for a pair of meets. The Musco Twilight will take place on Saturday, May 3 in Iowa City, Iowa, while the Payton Jordan Invite is set for Sunday, May 4 in Palo Alto, Calif.