NCAA Men’s 400 — Year’s Fastest For Ross

As part of his successful defense, Randolph Ross lowered his yearly collegiate leader from 44.23 to 44.13. (MIKE SCOTT)

COMING INTO THE MEET, the accolades belonged to North Carolina A&T’s Randolph Ross, who won the last two NCAA Champs races (’21 Outdoor, ’22 Indoor) and was a member of last year’s United States Olympic team. The formchart leader, with a 43.85 PR from last year’s meet, would certainly be the target.

Others to contend with would include Elijah Godwin (formchart #5), Ross’s Tokyo teammate from Georgia; Jonathan Jones (#2), an 800/400 star from Texas; and Champion Allison (#3) a Florida transfer from Alabama who impressed in the indoor season with a 45.04 around the shorter track.

Allison, the SEC winner indoors and out, sent a strong message in the semis with a PR and Gator school record 44.29. That was the second fastest semi in meet history, behind only Baylor’s Darold Williamson (44.27 in ’05).

In the final Ross led at halfway in 21.0 and as they hit 300m it was Ross, Allison and Godwin in that order. They cruised home without changing positions with Ross securing victory in a list-leading 44.13, the =No. 9 performance in collegiate history. He’s the event’s first repeat winner since Kirani James in ’11.

Allison gave a strong fight but came home 2nd in 44.41 (just off of his two days old PR). Godwin closed with a PR 44.50 for 3rd and Jones was 4th in 44.93. Florida got 14 team points from this race as Ryan Willie finished 5th in a PR 45.00.

Asked if not breaking 44 was a disappointment, Ross replied, “Not so much. I think 43, so my ultimate goal was 42… we are just progressing day by day. At least I ran another season’s best.”

There is much speculation about Ross’s options now that his father/coach, Duane Ross, has been chosen as the new head of the Tennessee program. He could stay at A&T for one final season, transfer to Tennessee or go pro.


MEN’S 400 RESULTS

FINAL (June 10)

1. *Randolph Ross (NCAT) 44.13 (CL) (x, =9 C; x, =6 NCAA) (21.0, 10.9 [31.9], 11.2) (21.0/22.1)

2. *Champion Allison (Fl) 44.41;

3. *Elija Godwin (Ga) 44.50 PR;

4. *Jonathan Jones’ (Tx-Bar) 44.93;

5. **Ryan Willie (Fl) 45.00 PR;

6. **Richard Kuykendoll (Ok) 45.73;

7. **Jevaughn Powell’ (UTEP-Jam) 45.81;

8. Tyler Johnson (OhSt) 45.83;

… dnc—***Emmanuel Bamidele (TxAM).

SEMIS (June 08)

I–1. Jones’ 44.97; 2. Willie 45.47; 3. Johnson 45.58; 4. *Jacory Patterson (Fl) 45.78; 5. *Willington Wright (Tx) 45.93; 6. *Brian Faust (Ky) 46.08; 7. **Johnnie Blockburger (USC) 46.36; 8. *Jovahn Williamson (NM) 46.44.

II–1. Allison 44.29 PR; 2. Ross 44.43; 3. Powell’ 45.47; 4. Bamidele’ 45.53; 5. *Ismail Turner (UCLA) 45.71; 6. *Cameron Reynolds (UCLA) 45.95; 7. ***Steven McElroy (Cinc) 46.30; 8. Michael Phillippy (Prin) 46.37.

III–1. Godwin 45.47; 2. Kuykendoll 45.59; 3. Dwight St. Hillaire’ (Ky) 45.65; 4. **Khaleb McRae (Al) 45.82; 5. **Brian Herron (Tx) 46.18; 6. ***Justin Robinson (AzSt) 46.23; 7. **Dubem Amene’ (Mi-Ngr) 46.68; 8. *Gamali Felix’ (AzSt-Grn) 47.67. ◻︎

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