Wildcats Set for World Championships

MANHATTAN, Kan. - Kansas State decathlete Moritz Cleve is among a select group of current student-athletes set to compete in the IAAF World Championships in Athletics this week in Berlin. After an impressive sophomore season both indoors and outdoors, the native German has been selected by the German Federation to represent his country.

K-State track and field coach Cliff Rovelto said earlier this week from Germany that the honor of being selected to represent his nation is even more impressive for Cleve because of his age and the event he will be competing in.

"It is rare that someone so young competes at this level, particularly in the decathlon," Rovelto said. "He is somewhat of a surprise selection, which speaks to his phenomenal improvements over the past two years."

The World Championships are set to begin Friday from Berlin and run through August 23 with day one of the decathlon on Wednesday.

The decathlon pits athletes against each other in 10 different track and field disciplines over two days testing their strength, speed and endurance. In the track and field world, the winner of the decathlon at the Olympics receives the title "World's Greatest Athlete" with American Bryan Clay currently the holding claim after winning gold in Beijing.

Cleve recently finished third at the NCAA Outdoor Championship and set a Big 12 Championship record with 8,004 points to become just the second Wildcat in school history to break the coveted 8,000-point mark. During the indoor season, Cleve also won the Big 12 heptathlon title and finished fifth at the NCAA Championship. Cleve is one of six current Big 12 athletes competing at the World Championships. Texas A&M has three student-athletes represented, while Colorado and Texas Tech each have one as well.

He will not be the only K-State representative at the World Championships, either. Volunteer coach Diana Pickler is competing in the heptathlon set to begin Saturday. Pickler recently won the USA Championship with a personal record of 6,290 points over the seven events.

K-State assistant coach Steve Fritz will also be in Berlin as a staff member for Team USA. Fritz is serving as an assistant coach for the men's team.

Fans can follow the action at the IAAF World Championships in a number of ways. Events will be televised on NBC and Versus throughout the nine days of action. NBC will air the event at 1 p.m. both Saturdays and 2 p.m. both Sundays of the championships. Versus will broadcast during the weekdays, and webcasts will be available every day at universalsports.com. Stay tuned to k-statesports.com to see how Cleve and Pickler perform.

- k-statesports.com -