K-State Track Ranked Among Nation's Best in Preseason

Erik Kynard

Jan. 8, 2013

USTFCCCA Release - with complete rankings

Last season, K-State track and field had a successful campaign highlighted by high jumper Erik Kynard’s silver at the London Olympics and second straight NCAA outdoor title. With the indoor season getting underway this weekend for much of the nation, the Wildcats men and women are ranked among the top teams in the nation in the USTFCCCA Indoor Preseason Rankings as the men come in at No. 22 and the women are No. 35.

The USTFCCCA rankings formula takes into account performances from athletes in each event and awards points based on their ranking in the event and on the strength of the performance from last season. K-State’s men have eight athletes ranked in a total of six events to open the year led by Kynard. His jump of 7-07.00 (2.31m) last season ranks No. 2 in the event behind Indiana’s Derek Drouin by just two centimeters.

This year juco transfer Zack Riley joins Kynard at K-State to give the Wildcats one of the top 1-2 combinations in the high jump. Riley comes is tied at No. 6 along with Arizona’s Edgar Rivera-Morales and Nick Ross. Kris Kornegay-Gober of NC State also is tied for sixth.

Another junior college transfer in Jharyl Bowry gives K-State one more ranked in the top 10 in their respective event as Bowry comes in at No. 9 in the long jump. Two more Wildcats rank in the top 20 with sprinter Carlos Rodriguez coming in at No. 19 in the 60 meter dash and Devin Dick at No. 19 in the heptathlon. Pole vaulters Kyle Wait and Cameron Savage are tied for 34th.

On the women’s side, combined events specialist Merryl Mbeng is ranked fourth after scoring 4,069 points in the pentathlon to finish second in her debut as a Wildcat in December at the Carol Robinson Winter Pentathlon. She is one of five Wildcats currently ranked in an event. She is joined by sophomore high jumper Alyx Treasure at No. 7 in the high jump. Treasure leapt 6-00.00 (1.83m) last season.

Sophomore Joslyn Barnes is also ranked in the high jump at No. 27. Erica Twiss gives K-State two ranked combined events athletes with her standing at No. 24. Freshman Jasmine Gibbs is 30th in the 60 meters after breaking the school record in the event in her career debut in December.

The Big 12 Conference is again well-represented in the Top 25 of the USTFCCCA Rankings. The Texas Longhorns come in at No. 3 on the men’s side and Oklahoma’s men are ranked No. 24. The highest ranked women’s team in the Big 12 is Kansas coming in at No. 2. Iowa State adds another top 10 team at No. 8 on the preseason list. Texas (14) and Baylor (15) round out the women’s Top 25 for the conference.

After opening the season in December, the Wildcats return to the main portion of their indoor schedule this week when they compete at the Jayhawk Challenge on Friday at 1 p.m.