Track teams using MTSU meet as prep for title run

Lucas Aulbach

The track and field teams get the chance to take on another Sun Belt Conference team this Saturday.  The teams will head down to Murfreesboro, Tenn., for the Middle Tennessee Invitational.

Assistant Coach Craig Morehead described the teams’ preparation for the meet as “business as usual,” which was a sentiment junior jumper Alex Miller echoed.

“We’re in our conference season, so we’re looking at this more as a chance to prepare for the conference championship,” Miller said.

The meet comes in the middle of an important stretch for the teams, with few other chances to compete until the Sun Belt Conference Indoor Championships at the end of February.

Miller said that while Saturday’s meet is more for local teams than it is a Sun Belt meet, the competition still benefits WKU.

“Obviously we’re going to be able to see where MTSU stands right now, and they’re some of our direct competition,” he said.

Head Coach Erik Jenkins agreed with Miller.

“We’re going up against Middle Tennessee, and that alone is big Sun Belt competition,” he said.

Jenkins said the event should be looked at as one step on the road to the conference championship.

“Right now, we’re taking the season one day at a time,” he said.

Jenkins also said the teams will plan specific entries for the MTSU meet that will help prepare for the Sun Belt Championships.   

Miller said the teams must also prepare on their own. He said that while they meet three times a week to practice for several hours, it’s still necessary to work alone for at least 45 minutes every day.

Morehead said he’s also viewing Saturday’s meet as a chance to simulate some things for the conference championships.

“We’re going to run some off events at Middle Tennessee and try to get some extra work done,” he said.

Saturday will cap off a big week for WKU’s track and field.  The program announced its spring semester signing class Tuesday, featuring five recruits and transfers who have all competed at some sort of international level.

Jenkins said he is optimistic about the direction of the program.

“Anyone we bring in, we hope will have an immediate impact on the team,” Jenkins said. “This is an outstanding, deep group.”