EUGENE, Ore. - On the first day of the NCAA Outdoor Championships, the Baylor track and field team had three entries in action at Hayward Field Wednesday.
All three of BU’s entries, George Caddick (400m), Wil London (400m) and the men’s 4x400-meter relay, were in semifinal races on the track, looking to finish first or second in a heat or as one of the next two fastest times overall to qualify for event finals on Friday.
For only the third time in the last 37 years, Baylor's 4x400-meter relay did not advance to the finals of the NCAA Outdoor Championships as the quartet of Caleb Dickson, Wil London, Brandon Moore and George Caddick finished fourth in its heat with a time of 3:05.17. That mark ended of being the seventh-fastest on the day and just .01 seconds too slow as the second and final mark to qualify on time was Mississippi State’s 3:05.16.
Dickson, running with an apparent foot injury for the final 125 meters of the race, opened with a split of 47.53, which left the Bears near the back of the pack at the first exchange. London ran a 45.16 split and got the Bears up to third as he handed the baton to Moore. That third leg split of 46.97 dropped the Bears to fifth as Caddick prepared to anchor the crew. The junior Bear ran 45.37 to move BU up to fourth and just out of qualifying.
Prior to running on the relay, both Caddick and London missed out on qualifying for the final of the 400 meters finishing 14th and 19th, respectively.
In the opening heat, London got off to a slow start and was sixth with 100 meters to go. He tried to close strong, but only moved up to fourth in with a time of 46.08.
Caddick, running out of lane one in the second of three heats, was near the back of the pack as he rounded the final curve and was unable to make up much ground down the stretch as he took seventh in his heat in 46.63.
• Baylor’s men’s 4x400-meter relay time was faster than the two automatically qualifying times out of the third and final heat - Purdue (3:05.95) and Ohio State (3:05.99).
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“To miss the 4x4 by a hundredth of a second is a heartbreaker and knowing that we ran faster than both times that came out of the last heat was tough. It looks like Caleb injured his foot. It took a lot of courage for him to finish the race and give those other guys a shot." - Harbour on the relay
Baylor's women's athletes will be in action Thursday at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. BU's first event will be the pole vault with Annie Rhodes starting at 5 p.m. (7 p.m. CT). Four more entries, Olicia Williams (800m), Kiana Hawn (400h), Cion Hicks (shot put) and the 4x400-meter relay of Taylor Bennett, Ashley Fields, Hawn and Williams will be in action later in the evening.