MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. – In the 60th annual relay rankings by Track & Field News, the Texas A&M men earned a No. 1 ranking for the 2016 season, marking the fourth time in the past six years the Aggies have claimed the top honor by the magazine.
“The distinction of winning this national ranking is very important, especially since Texas A&M has been ranked number one in four of the past six years,” noted Aggie head coach Pat Henry. “The relays are a centering point for our team and an important part of the team aspect for track and field. It shows good stability of our program as well.”
Previous top rankings for the Aggie men have occurred in 2011, 2012, and 2015. Texas A&M women have ranked first twice, in 2011 and 2014.
The men’s relay rankings for 2016 had Texas A&M producing 35 points to lead the field. Following the Aggies were LSU (29), Florida (25), Arkansas (18), Penn State (18), Mississippi State (16), Indiana (14), Houston (13), Penn (13) and Georgetown (12).
In the rankings compiled by Track & Field News, the relay events are scored 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 (5-4-3-2-1 for the shuttle hurdles relay). The relay events include 4×100, 4×200, 4×400, 4×800, 4xMile, sprint medley, distance medley, and shuttle hurdles relays.
Texas A&M men were ranked in four relay events with the Aggies claiming first in the 4×200, second in the 4×800, as well as third in the 4×400 and sprint medley.
“Running on various relays is a part of the meet where everyone knows it’s a team effort,” said Henry. “Even though our whole sport is a team effort, we have to talk about that because a lot of our young people are brought up being told track and field is an individual sport. It is an individual sport, but it is a team sport at the college level.
“To win a national championship, or even a conference championship, you have to be successful in the relays. This is a reason why I believe the relays are important.”
The Texas A&M women ranked fourth in the 4×100 and ninth in the sprint medley, scoring six points in the magazine’s rankings. Oregon topped the women’s rankings by one point over LSU, 35-34. The rest of the top 10 included Georgetown (28), Arkansas (24), Texas (20), Kentucky (16), Clemson (14), Florida (14), South Carolina (14) and Tennessee (14).
During the 2017 outdoor track and field season there will be a new relay meet for the Aggies to display their talents as LSU will host the SEC Relays in late April.