By Chad Waller, NAIA Director of Communications and Sports Information
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – (Press Book – PDF) (Live Video) The 62nd annual men’s and 33rd annual women’s NAIA Outdoor Track and Field national Championships are set to take place in Marion, Ind., from May 23 – 25. Indiana Wesleyan University will host the 2013 national championships for the fourth-straight year. The city becomes the fifth different in championships history to host this event for four-or-more consecutive years.
The men’s decathlon kicks off the event on Thursday at 10 a.m. EDT with the women’s heptathlon beginning at 10:30 a.m. All track events get started at 2:30 p.m. Thursday, which follow the Opening Ceremonies at 2 p.m. For the complete schedule, click here.
The national championships will be streamed live and free, courtesy of Indiana Wesleyan University and WIWU TV-51. For more information on the men’s championships, click here. For more information on the women’s championships, click here.
Championships Facts and Figures
• Indiana Wesleyan is represented by 13 female athletes, 12 male competitors and two relays teams at the national championships.
• Indiana Wesleyan has hosted several expansive meets each year including the National Christian College Athletic Association (NCCAA) National Championships and the Indiana Little State Championships. With USA Track & Field headquartered an hour away in Indianapolis, the state is widely known for the support and promotion of the sport throughout the country.
• Marion is the first city in the state of Indiana to host the NAIA Outdoor Track & Field National Championships.
• Abilene, Texas was the first city to host the men’s event in 1952. Host institution Abilene Christian posted 74 points to take the team title over runner-up San Diego State (Calif.). The women’s national championships first started in 1981 in Houston, Texas. Texas Southern won the team banner with 115.5 points over second-place Prairie View A&M (Texas).
• There are currently 159 women’s varsity programs and 157 men’s varsity programs that are sponsored by NAIA institutions.
• Oklahoma Baptist swept the 2013 indoor national championship team titles and became the first school since 2004 and fifth in championship history to win both titles in the same track season.
• Akela Jones and Adam Godwin of Oklahoma Baptist look to continue their success from the indoor national championships and perform well at Marion. Both athletes were awarded as the 2013 NAIA Indoor National Championships Most Valuable Performers. Jones is listed in the women’s 100 meters, 100-meter hurdles, high jump, long jump and 4x100-meter relay. Godwin will participate in the 800-meters, 1,500-meters and 4x800-meter relays.
• The Oklahoma Baptist women return to defend its 2012 national championship outdoor banner. Last year, the Bison collected 101.5 points to win its first-ever outdoor women’s trophy. From 2009-11, Oklahoma Baptist finished in the runner-up position.
• The Bison send 17 individuals and three relay teams to the women’s championships. Overall, those individuals and relay teams are seeded either Nos. 1 or 2 in 21 different events heading into the competition.
• Doane (Neb.) and Indiana Tech qualify the most female athletes with 22 each.
• The Concordia (Ore.) women’s squad is back after having placed first or second in the previous two championships. Last year, they were second with 81 points. Seven female athletes are listed in the championships, led by Gabriella Dixson in the throws. Dixson is the defending national champion in the Discus Throw and finished second in the Shot Put in 2012.
• In the 32 previous years of the women’s event, there have been 13 different programs to win the national championship. Former member Prairie View A&M (Texas) holds the record with nine titles. Within that group, there are seven institutions in current NAIA membership. Doane (Neb.), Life (Ga.), Southern-New Orleans (La.) and Wayland Baptist (Texas) are the active members that have won two national championships.
• There will be no men’s repeat team champion -- Shorter (Ga.) is no longer in NAIA membership.
• Doane and Oklahoma Baptist claim the most individuals on the men’s side with 24 competitors each.
• One of the men’s favorites is 2011 national runner-up Doane (Neb.). Zack Lindsley is one of two Tigers to be listed in three events -- Lindsley is involved in the Shot Put, Discus Throw and Hammer Throw. He finished second at the 2013 NAIA Indoor National Championships in the Weight Throw and third in the Shot Put.
• Oklahoma Baptist, who finished seventh in 2012, has eight men’s athletes listed as No. 1 in their respective events and one relay team as the top seed.
• In the 61 previous years of the men’s event, 24 teams have been crowned national champions. Former member Azusa Pacific (Calif.) holds the most titles with 15. Among active NAIA members, Life boasts the most rings with four.