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NCAA Outdoor Track Championship Blog: Day 2
From a tent overlooking the southwest corner of Drake Stadium, LibertyFlames.com will provide live blog coverage of the first two days of the 2011 NCAA Division I Outdoor Track & Field Championships.
We will only have one event to cover this evening, but it promises to be a doozy. Liberty's Sam Chelanga will attempt to successfully defend his NCAA national title in the 10K tonight at 9:50 p.m. Eastern.
Standing in Chelanga's way is a strong field, headlined by two of his Kenyan countrymen—Stephen Sambu of Arizona and Leonard Korir of Iona. Chelanga, Sambu and Korir are the only three NCAA runners ever to dip below the 27:30 mark for a 10K during the course of their collegiate careers, making this a highly-anticipated race.
Flotrack states, "Without a doubt, this is the highlight of the day (if not the meet). There are several sub-28 minute runners in the field and no shortage of championship worthy talent here."
LetsRun.com adds, "Day two of the championships will end with a spectacular men's 10,000 that features three Kenyan runners - Stephen Sambu of Arizona, Leonard Korir of Iona and Sam Chelanga of Liberty - with personal bests under 27:30 … Quite honestly, the three are so close to each other it's hard to pick between them. It's almost a complete coin flip."
Chelanga, Sambu and Korir could produce a race for the ages, which could threaten both the meet (28:01.30) and Drake Stadium (28:07.40) records.
One potential issue is the weather. We saw some heavy thunderstorms with hail roll through Des Moines this morning, delaying the start of the decathlon and heptathlon competitions. Any storms this evening could delay the start of Chelanga's race. I'll keep you posted on any schedule changes as the night progresses.
I will again be using the interactive CoveritLive blog interface. This format allows readers to submit comments and questions throughout the day, as you follow your favorite Flames and Lady Flames.
Tonight, I plan to post one update per lap during the 10K, so I don't break the NCAA's regulations against play-by-play blogging. I also encourage you to check out the race via the video streaming link above.
Without further ado, go Liberty!