Colwick Goes Up and Comes Down in the Record Books
Rice pole vaulter Jason Colwick became a two-time NCAA champion on June 12 after capturing the 2009 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field title at the University of Arkansas’ John McDonnell Field. He cleared 5.70m/18’ 8.25” at the meet after previously winning the 2009 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships, held March 13–14 at Texas A&M’s Gilliam Indoor Track Stadium, with a height of 5.60m/18’ 4.5”.
An upcoming senior, Colwick entered the indoor championships as the top-ranked vaulter with a season best of 5.61m/18’ 4.75”. He is the Owls’ first NCAA indoor pole vault champion, and their first individual NCAA indoor champion since Allison Beckford ’03 won the NCAA Indoor 400 meters in 2002. He also is the first C-USA product to win an NCAA Men’s indoor title.
Colwick is the first vaulter in C-USA history to top 18 feet, which he did three times during an indoor season that saw him surge past a crowded field to become the NCAA Champion. He holds the world’s second and NCAA’s No. 1 mark at 5.72m/18’ 9.25”, set at the 82nd Clyde Littlefield Texas Relays in Austin in April.
”It was a great night to jump with perfect weather conditions,” Colwick said of the outdoor meet at Arkansas. With the win there, he becomes Rice’s first NCAA outdoor champion since Ryan Harlan won the 2004 decathalon.
“This is all happening very fast, but I am sure I’ll catch up. I have never been an All-American before, so this is all very new to me. I am just glad my parents were able to see me win.” – Jason Colwick
Learn more: ricemagazine.info/10
In June, Colwick was named South Central Field Athlete of the Year by the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association. He is the third Rice student to win an NCAA pole vault title overall: Dave Roberts ’73 took three consecutive titles from 1971 to 1973, and Fred Hansen ’63 captured the NCAA title in 1962.
“This is all happening very fast, but I am sure I’ll catch up,” Colwick commented. “I have never been an All-American before, so this is all very new to me. I am just glad my parents were able to see me win.”