EUGENE, Ore. -- According to a source, late Sunday night officials from USA Track and Field were working to convince sprinter Jeneba Tarmoh to participate in Monday evening's unprecedented tie-breaking 100-meter runoff at Hayward Field to decide the final individual spot on the U.S. women's 100 team in London. Tarmoh, 22, and training partner Allyson Felix, 26, a two-time Olympic silver medalist in the 200 are scheduled to race at shortly after 5 p.m., Pacific Time. NBC has committed to televising the runoff live to the Eastern and Central time zones, cutting into coverage of the U.S. Olympic Swimming Trials.
DAEGU, South Korea -- The significant portion of the world that doesn't pay attention to track and field except when there is a ceremonial flame burning on the rim of the stadium first was brought into Usain Bolt's orbit on the night of Aug. 16, 2008 at the Beijing Birds Nest stadium. It was there that Bolt won the 100-meter gold medal in a world record 9.69 seconds despite dropping anchor before the finish line, a breathtaking show of dismissive domination. Think: Vintage Tiger winning the Masters while laughing and putting with a lob wedge during the Sunday back nine.
In some ways, very little has changed in the four years since Usain Bolt evolved sprinting. When it comes time to introduce Bolt at an international track meet anywhere on the planet, the stadium falls into anticipatory silence. A steadicam operator trains his lens on Bolt, who then puts on a little show. Sometimes he feigns slicking back his hair. Sometimes he runs through a series of hand gestures. At all times -- including when he is sick or injured, which of late, has been quite frequently -- he seems sublimely relaxed.
A book closed last week when it was announced that the Millrose Games, the most venerable of all indoor track meets, would be moving out of Madison Square Garden (cap. 18,000), its home since 1914, to the Armory in New York's Washington Heights (cap. 5,000). The event began in 1908 when the Wanamaker department store wanted to hold a track meet and did so at a local Armory. When the meet simply grew too big, it moved to Madison Square Garden, where it would become the venue's longest standing annual event.
EUGENE, Ore. -- In the final strides of his race, Andrew Wheating had already begun to process the disappointment. It was the 1,500 meters at the USA Track and Field national championships Saturday afternoon at storied Hayward Field. (Where, as a University of Oregon sophomore in 2008, he had made the U.S. Olympic team -- and rocked the Hayward house -- with a stretch-running second-place finish in the 800 meters, the most emotional race of that year's Trials).
AUSTIN, Texas -- Football paid for this house. It is a fine house, nothing ostentatious, set back from the highway in the suburbs northeast of Austin. The front door opens onto 2,890 square feet of living space, centrally air conditioned and spread over two stories with an attached two-car garage, two-and-a-half bathrooms, an open porch and a fireplace. On the living room wall, prominent as you walk through the front door, Elizabeth Brown has framed a photograph of her younger son, Michael Johnson, an action shot capturing the height of his promise.
Sports Illustrated will announce its choice for Sportsman of the Year on Nov. 30. Here's one of the nominations for that honor by an SI writer. Encores happen in sport, this we know. Michael Jordan kept winning NBA titles. Joe Montana kept winning Super Bowls. Lance Armstrong kept winning Tours de France. Greatness once established is proved again and solidified, and a legend's resume grows longer. But in 2009, Usain Bolt did something far more remarkable -- he improved on the impossible.
With the NFL combine set to begin this week in Indianapolis, SI.com's Bucky Brooks, a former scout, is ranking the top 2009 draft prospects by position group. The lists were compiled through a series of conversations with scouts and game-tape evaluations. The schedule will be as follows:
BEIJING -- There will always be another. This is the eternal lesson of track and field. On a sweltering August night 12 years ago, Michael Johnson lashed the 200-meter world record to his back and seemed to drag it deep into the future. He ran 19.32 seconds, so fast that young men accepted that they would not see the record broken again in their lifetimes.
Usain Bolt makes the impossible seem commonplace. His running has been so spectacular here that he has forced hard-traveled track scribes to consider the question: Can Bolt break Michael Johnson's 12-year-old record in the 200? The time to beat is 19.32.
Chris Brown is headed to lunch in a place where eyes pan like security cameras, scanning for threats. It's the giant, circus-tent of a cafeteria at the Olympic Village, and everywhere athletes are stealing furtive glances at those who would get between them and their destiny.
It's the iconic image of modern American sprinting: Michael Johnson, golden shoes flashing past the clock reading 19.32 seconds at the end of the 1996 Olympic 200-meter dash. It was so much faster than anyone had ever run, that even Johnson looked stunned, throwing open his arms and screaming as he caught a glimpse of the time. He was alone, on top of the world.
Nicknamed "The Gazelle" on account of her graceful running style and speed around the track, France's Marie-Jose Perec is one of the greatest female sprinters of modern times, and also the most troubled.
EUGENE, Ore -- On Saturday morning, no less an authority on track and field than Michael Johnson conceded the future of the 100- and 200-meter races to 21-year-old Jamaican Usain Bolt. There is evidence to support Johnson's theory.
Two years ago U.S. sprinter Torri Edwards's training partners went to Europe for the summer track season, leaving her behind in Los Angeles. Edwards, who had been slapped with a two-year suspension in July 2004 after testing positive for a banned stimulant, spent long afternoons on the track at USC (her alma mater) and Mt. San Antonio College, sprinting past housewives and retirees in the sunshine. "[I was] bored, angry and sad," Edwards recalls, "missing a sport that I love."