Early-Line Favorites For ’20 NCAA Outdoor Titles

Surprisingly relegated to 2nd last year, USC’s women are projected to be overwhelming national champs in ’20. (KIRBY LEE/IMAGE OF SPORT)

NOW THAT we have a fairly firm fix on what collegiate track rosters will look like for the ’20 season—there will be updates when the next semesters/quarters roll around of course—let’s take a peek at who the NCAA Outdoor Championships might crown as winners in Austin on the second weekend of next June.

ON THE MEN’S SIDE, veteran prognosticator John Auka projects a relatively comfortable 9-point win for LSU over Georgia, with only another point back to host Texas. And that’s an LSU team that had vault superstar Mondo Duplantis go pro early. The men’s picks:

Men’s Teams

1. LSU 55; 2. Georgia 46; 3. Texas 45; 4. Florida State 42; 5. Texas A&M 36.

Men’s Individuals

(# = defending champ)
100—Matthew Boling (Georgia); 200— Micaiah Harris (Texas); 400—Trevor Stewart (North Carolina A&T); 800—Marco Arop (Mississippi State); 1500—#Yared Nuguse (Notre Dame); Steeple—Ryan Smeeton (Oklahoma State); 5000—Edwin Kurgat (Iowa State); 10,000—Conner Mantz (BYU); 110H—Trey Cunningham (Florida State); 400H—#Quincy Hall (South Carolina); 4×1—Florida State; 4×4—#Texas A&M; HJ—Tejaswin Shankar (Kansas State); PV—#Chris Nilsen (South Dakota); LJ—#JuVaughn Harrison (LSU); TJ—#Chengetayi Mapaya (TCU); SP—#Tripp Piperi (Texas); DT—Sam Welsh (Harvard); HT— Gleb Dudarev (Kansas); JT—#Anderson Peters (Mississippi State); Dec—#Johannes Erm (Georgia).

ON THE WOMEN’S SIDE, our crystal-balling was done by longtime predictor Jack Pfeifer, who currently sees USC—an upset loser last year—absolutely destroying the field, racking up a point more than the next two finishers combined. The women’s picks:

Women’s Teams

1. USC 81; 2. Florida State 41; 3. LSU 39; 4. Arkansas 36; 5. Georgia 35.

Women’s Individuals

100—Twanisha Terry (USC); 200—#Angie Annelus (USC); 400—#Wadeline Jonathas (South Carolina); 800—Nia Akins (Penn); 1500—Dani Jones (Colorado); Steeple—Erica Birk (BYU); 5000—Taylor Werner (Arkansas); 10,000—Weini Kelati (New Mexico); 100H—Chanel Brissett (USC); 400H—Britton Wilson (Tennessee); 4×1—#USC; 4×4—USC; HJ—Nicole Greene (North Carolina); PV—Lisa Gunnarsson (LSU); LJ—Jasmyn Steels (Northwestern Louisiana); TJ—Jasmine Moore (Georgia); SP—#Samantha Noennig (Arizona State); DT—#Lagi Tausaga (Iowa); HT—Camryn Rogers (Cal); JT—Kylee Carter (Auburn); Hept—Nina Schultz (Georgia).