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2013 Big South Outdoor Track - Men's Preview

April 17, 2013  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Ryan Smith is the defending Big South men's shot put and discus champion.

Ryan Smith is the defending Big South men's shot put and discus champion.

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For the first time since 2007, Liberty will host the Big South Men's and Women's Outdoor Track & Field Championships, Thursday through Saturday at the Matthes-Hopkins Track Complex. This week's meet will mark the 20th Big South Outdoor Track & Field Championships and the seventh time the event has been contested in Lynchburg.

The Liberty men's squad will aim for its seventh consecutive team championship at this meet. A victory would also wrap up the Flames' seventh straight Big South "Triple Crown," after Liberty previously captured Big South titles in men's cross country and men's indoor track & field this year.

Meanwhile, the Lady Flames will attempt to recapture the Big South outdoor team championship, which they most recently claimed in 2010. Coastal Carolina has won two outdoor women's titles in a row and seven of the last nine championships.

The Big South Outdoor Track & Field Championships will begin Thursday at 11 a.m., with the men's hammer. The three-day meet is scheduled to conclude at approximately 4:35 p.m. Saturday, with the men's 4 x 400 relay wrapping up the championship.

All events, with the exception of the men's and women's hammer, will be contested within the newly-renovated Matthes-Hopkins Track Complex. The hammer throw will take place on Liberty's Campus East.

Liberty has swept the men's and women's team titles each of the previous six times it has hosted the Big South Outdoor Track & Field Championships, including the inaugural event in 1994, as well as 1996, 1998, 2001, 2002 and 2007.
    
How to Follow the Action
All three days of competition will be video streamed live on the Big South Network, for a small fee.

Live results will be available throughout the meet.

Periodic updates will also be posted to the official Liberty Flames Twitter account (@libertyflames).

Weather Report
Thursday is forecasted to be the nicest day of the meet, weather-wise, with a high of 82 degrees under partly cloudy skies. The weather will be more unsettled Friday, with a high of 76, a steady south breeze and scattered thunderstorms. Saturday's weather is supposed to produce afternoon sunshine with a high of 64 degrees.

Men's Meet Preview
The Liberty men's track & field team has captured 17 titles in the 19-year history of the Big South Outdoor Track & Field Championships, including the last six in succession. Liberty has been especially dominant in recent years, winning each of its last six outdoor championships by 74 or more points. Last season, the Flames enjoyed a 78-point margin of victory (213-135) over runner-up and host team Coastal Carolina.

The Chanticleers could present the greatest challenge to the Flames again this weekend. Coach Jeff Jacobs' Coastal Carolina squad has finished in the top two at this meet 10 times in the last 11 years, including a victory over Liberty in 2006.

High Point, coached by Mike Esposito, is a team on the rise. Fueled by a talented group of distance runners, the Panthers recorded their first-ever conference team runner-up finish at the 2013 Big South Indoor Track & Field Championships in February.

Liberty redshirt senior Ryan Smith will attempt to make conference history this weekend. Smith, who enters the meet as the reigning Big South men's shot put and discus champion, will attempt to sweep the Big South men's indoor and outdoor shot put titles for the fourth consecutive year. If successful, he would become the first Big South athlete ever to sweep an event's indoor and outdoor crowns in four consecutive years.

Sophomores Leonard Robbins (400) and Kyle Wheeler (high jump) will look to defend the conference titles they won as freshmen in 2012. Wheeler is a perfect three-for-three in capturing Big South high jump titles so far in his career, including the indoor and outdoor championships.

Even with defending Big South 10K champion Ngetich Kipchirchir redshirting the 2013 outdoor season, the Flames hope for big things from their distance runners. Liberty enters the meet with the conference's top seed times in the steeplechase (Josh MacDonald), 5K (Caleb Edmonds) and 10K (MacDonald). At this year's Big South indoor meet, Edmonds won the 3K title and MacDonald took top honors in the 5K.

Men's 100-Meter Dash
Event Schedule: Prelims – Friday at 4:20 p.m.; Final – Saturday at 2:10 p.m.
Defending Champion: Javon Young (Charleston Southern) – 10.38 (Third in a row)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Evan Emery (High Point) – 2nd place
2013 Indoor Champion (60 Meters): Rozzie Johnson (Charleston Southern) – 6.82
2013 Leader: Evan Emery (High Point) – 10.36
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 5 (Guifaly Christolin – 2002)
Liberty Entrants: Tarell Williams, Roderick Spruel, Maxwell Asante and ConRoy Smith
Outlook: Charleston Southern great Javon Young has graduated after winning the Big South 100-meter title three years in a row. In his absence, High Point junior Evan Emery and Charleston Southern junior Rozzie Johnson appear to be the top two favorites to claim this year's title. Emery placed second to Young in 2012 and owns the Big South's top time of the season, 10.36. Johnson defeated Emery to win the Big South indoor 60-meter championship in February. Liberty's Tarell Williams (10.76 season best) and Roderick Spruel (10.79) are two of 11 Big South sprinters who have clocked sub-10.80 times this season. Spruel was the Flames' lone finalist in this event last season, placing seventh.

Men's 200-Meter Dash
Event Schedule: Prelims – Friday at 6:20 p.m.; Final – Saturday at 3:30 p.m.
Defending Champion: Javon Young (Charleston Southern) – 20.82 (Second in a row)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Rozzie Johnson (Charleston Southern) – 2nd place
2013 Indoor Champion: Jayshawn Campbell (Campbell) – 21.85
2013 Leader: Rozzie Johnson (Charleston Southern) – 21.27
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 6 (Guifaly Christolin - 2002)
Liberty Entrants: Leonard Robbins, Roderick Spruel, Tarell Williams and Tyler Weigandt
Outlook: Charleston Southern has won eight Big South outdoor men's 200-meter dash titles in a row and swept all three podium positions in 2012. Buccaneer Rozzie Johnson, who placed second in this event at both the 2012 outdoor and 2013 indoor conference meets, is the top seed at 21.27. Campbell's Jayshawn Campbell was something of a surprise winner at the Big South indoor meet but is not entered in the 200 outdoors. Liberty's top hopes lie with sophomore Leonard Robbins, who finished fourth a year ago. He enters the meet seeded 13th in the conference at 21.94 seconds.

Men's 400-Meter Dash
Event Schedule: Prelims – Friday at 3:40 p.m.; Final – Saturday at 1:55 p.m.
Defending Champion: Leonard Robbins (Liberty) – 47.37
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Robbins
2013 Indoor Champion: Jayshawn Campbell (Campbell) – 48.91
2013 Leader: Jarad Jeter (Charleston Southern) – 47.72
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 9 (Leonard Robbins – 2012)
Liberty Entrants: Andre Washington, Leonard Robbins, Paul Arslain and Kyle Gill
Outlook: Liberty sophomore Leonard Robbins is the reigning Big South outdoor 400-meter dash champion but ranks just seventh in the conference this year and second on his own team, behind Andre Washington. Charleston Southern freshman Jarad Jeter (47.72) and Radford senior Kaise White (47.80) are the only two Big South runners who have broken 48 seconds this season. White was the runner-up to Robbins in 2012. The remainder of the top eight seeds includes three Liberty Flames and three Coastal Carolina Chanticleers.

Men's 800-Meter Run
Event Schedule: Prelims – Friday at 4:55 p.m.; Final – Saturday at 2:30 p.m.
Defending Champion: Felix Kitur (VMI) – 1:48.79 (Fifth in a row)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Eric Graves (Radford) – 5th place
2013 Indoor Champion: Jacob Lysher (VMI) – 1:56.48
2013 Leader: Isaac Wendland (Liberty) – 1:52.43
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 4 (Chris Lyons - 2005)
Liberty Entrants: Isaac Wendland, John Sherret, Trevor Hope and Christopher Arvey
Outlook: For the first time since 2007, someone other than VMI's Felix Kitur will win the Big South outdoor men's 800-meter run, after the Keydet standout captured an unprecedented five straight conference titles in the event. Reigning Big South indoor champion Jacob Lysher and teammate Avery Martin will try to keep the championship in Lexington. However, the top seed at 1:52.43 is Liberty redshirt senior Isaac Wendland. Wendland has earned three All-Big South honors at 800 meters during his career but is seeking his first title. Teammate John Sherret will also look for a strong performance after placing third indoors.

Men's 1,500-Meter Run
Event Schedule: Final – Saturday at 1 p.m.
Defending Champion: Felix Kitur (VMI) – 3:50.80 (Second in a row)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Andrey Dmitriev (VMI) – 2nd place
2013 Indoor Champion (Mile): Brian Gorwitz (Radford) – 4:12.63
2013 Leader: Chris Schulist (Campbell) – 3:48.07
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 7 (Sam Chelanga - 2009)
Liberty Entrants: Isaac Wendland and Jarred Cornfield
Outlook: The men's 1,500 figures to be a competitive race, with numerous runners in contention for the victory. Campbell's Chris Schulist, the indoor mile runner-up, is seeded first at 3:48.07. VMI's Andrey Dmitriev has finished second in this race to teammate Felix Kitur during each of the past two seasons. Liberty's Isaac Wendland finished third in 2011 before redshirting the 2012 outdoor season. Radford's Brian Gorwitz was the 2013 Big South indoor mile champion.

Men's 3,000-Meter Steeplechase
Event Schedule: Final – Friday at 7 p.m.
Defending Champion: Jacob Smith (High Point) – 8:54.56
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Josh MacDonald (Liberty) – 2nd place
2013 Leader: Josh MacDonald (Liberty) – 8:57.26
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 8 (Evans Kigen - 2011)
Liberty Entrants: Josh MacDonald, Zach Barker and Nate Jones
Outlook: With defending conference champion Jacob Smith redshirting the 2013 season, 2012 runner-up Josh MacDonald of Liberty is favored to win his first Big South steeplechase crown. MacDonald could have a chance to become only the second Big South men's runner ever to win the conference steeplechase and 10K championships at the same meet. The late Terah Kipchiris of Coastal Carolina did so in 2004. Other top contenders include Winthrop's AJ Fitzsimmons, Campbell's Morgan Timiney and the High Point duo of Dakota Peachee and Benji Szalai.

Men's 5,000-Meter Run
Event Schedule: Final – Saturday at 4:05 p.m.
Defending Champion: Jacob Smith (High Point) – 14:24.66
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Caleb Edmonds (Liberty) – 2nd place
2013 Indoor Champion: Josh MacDonald (Liberty) – 14:27.62
2013 Leader: Caleb Edmonds (Liberty) – 13:57.09
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 7 (Evans Kigen – 2011)
Liberty Entrants: Caleb Edmonds, Jeremie Bourget, Josh MacDonald and David Ricksecker
Outlook: Liberty's Caleb Edmonds, who won this year's Big South indoor 3K crown, will be a considerable favorite to win Saturday's 5K title. He owns the conference's fastest outdoor time of 2013 by 37 seconds, thanks to his 13:57.09 effort at the Stanford Invitational. That made Edmonds just the fourth Big South runner ever to dip under 14:00 in this event. Teammate Josh MacDonald was the Big South indoor 5K titlist in February but could be running his third race in three days if he toes the starting line for the 5K. Defending champion Jacob Smith of High Point is redshirting the season.

Men's 10,000-Meter Run
Event Schedule: Final – Thursday at 9:15 p.m.
Defending Champion: Ngetich Kipchirchir (Liberty) – 31:05.62
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: David Ricksecker (Liberty) – 5th place
2013 Leader: Josh MacDonald (Liberty) – 29:57.64
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 6 (Ngetich Kipchirchir – 2012)
Liberty Entrants: Josh MacDonald, Jeremie Bourget, Caleb Edmonds and David Ricksecker
Outlook: As is the case with the men's steeplechase and 5K, the defending 10K conference champion (Liberty's Ngetich Kipchirchir) is redshirting the 2013 outdoor season. The Flames' David Ricksecker is the top returnee from last year's race, where he placed fifth. Teammate Josh MacDonald is the conference's No. 1 seed among five men's runners who have completed a 10K in 2013, with a personal-best time of 29:57.64. Yet another Flame, Caleb Edmonds, is seeded No. 1 in the 5K but will be running the first track 10K of his career on Thursday.

Men's 110-Meter Hurdles
Event Schedule: Prelims – Friday at 3:10 p.m.; Final – Saturday at 1:35 p.m.
Defending Champion: Milan Ristic (UNC Asheville) – 13.99
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Ristic
2013 Indoor Champion (60 Hurdles): Milan Ristic (UNC Asheville) – 7.79
2013 Leader: Vincent Wyatt (Radford) – 13.81
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 6 (Micah Brinkley - 2004)
Liberty Entrants: Richard Whitted
Outlook: The men's 110-meter hurdles will feature one of the top head-to-head matchups of the meet, as Radford sophomore Vincent Wyatt (13.81) and UNC Asheville junior Milan Ristic (13.88) both rank among the nation's top 20. Wyatt will seek his first Big South title, as Ristic has won back-to-back indoor crowns and the 2012 outdoor conference championship. The Flames' lone entrant, Richard Whitted, ranks No. 12 on the conference performance list.

Men's 400-Meter Hurdles
Event Schedule: Prelims – Friday at 5:35 p.m.; Final – Saturday at 3:05 p.m.
Defending Champion: Brett Olinger (Radford) – 53.24 (Second in a row)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Andrew Chavous (Winthrop) – 2nd place
2013 Leader: Russel Kanner (Coastal Carolina) – 52.81
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 9 (Tim O'Donnell - 2009)
Liberty Entrants: Andre Washington, Marc Jackson and Richard Whitted
Outlook: Two-time defending Big South 400 hurdles champion Brett Olinger of Radford has graduated, leaving last year's runner-up (Winthrop's Andrew Chavous) and third-place finisher (Coastal Carolina's Russel Kanner) as two of the top contenders for the 2013 crown. Kanner enters as the top seed at 52.81. Liberty's Andre Washington has steadily improved his 400 hurdles time this season, claiming the No. 4 seed with his 53.34 clocking at the Liberty Collegiate Invitational.

Men's 4 x 100 Relay
Event Schedule: Final – Saturday at 12:40 p.m.
Defending Champion: Charleston Southern – 39.91 (Seventh in a row)
2013 Leader: Charleston Southern – 40.77
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 7 (2005)
Outlook: Charleston Southern has won seven consecutive Big South 4 x 100 relay crowns and owns the conference's top time of 2013, 40.77. However, Liberty (40.99 season best) and Coastal Carolina (41.07) are also expected to contend. The Flames were the last Big South team other than CSU to win this event, taking top honors in 2005.

Men's 4 x 400 Relay
Event Schedule: Final – Saturday at 4:30 p.m.
Defending Champion: Charleston Southern – 3:12.92
2013 Indoor Champion: Liberty – 3:20.66
2013 Leader: Coastal Carolina – 3:13.64
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 7 (2001)
Outlook: Always an exciting event to close out the meet, the men's 4 x 400 relay should be no different this year. No. 1 seed Coastal Carolina, defending champion Charleston Southern and 2013 Big South indoor champion Liberty are separated by just 1.45 seconds atop the conference performance list. The Flames have captured back-to-back Big South indoor 4 x 400 titles but are seeking their first outdoor championship in this event since 2001.

Men's Long Jump
Event Schedule: Final – Thursday at 2 p.m.
Defending Champion: Tyler Askew (Coastal Carolina) – 24-0.25 (7.32m)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Braxton Drummond (Charleston Southern) – 2nd place
2013 Indoor Champion: Braxton Drummond (Charleston Southern) – 24-0.25 (7.32m)
2013 Leader: Lavon Allen (Charleston Southern) – 25-0 (7.62m)
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 10 (Clarence Powell - 2010)
Liberty Entrants: Tarell Williams, Aaron Johnson, Kyle Wheeler and Kevin Reddington
Outlook: Charleston Southern looks for big points in the men's long jump, behind the dynamic duo of Lavon Allen and Braxton Drummond. Allen leads the Big South and is tied for No. 14 nationally with a 25-0 jump at the Florida Relays. Drummond, seeded second in the conference at 24-5.5, captured the Big South indoor title in February and went on to long jump at the 2013 NCAA Division I Indoor Track & Field Championships. Liberty boasts good depth in the event, with Tarell Williams (No. 3), Aaron Johnson (No. 6), Kyle Wheeler (No. 8) and Kevin Reddington (tie for No. 10) all ranked among the Big South's top 11 long jumpers.

Men's Triple Jump
Event Schedule: Final – Saturday at 2 p.m.
Defending Champion: Burton Jones (Coastal Carolina) – 48-2.75 (14.70m)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: JaDarrell Barnette (Coastal Carolina) – 2nd place
2013 Indoor Champion: Terry Davis (Gardner-Webb) – 47-4.25 (14.43m)
2013 Leader: EJ Reddick (Charleston Southern) – 49-4.25 (15.04m)
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 8 (Chris Johnson - 2011)
Liberty Entrants: Chris Johnson, Aaron Johnson, Kevin Reddington and Kyle Wheeler
Outlook: The men's triple jump competition figures to be wide open, as it was at the 2013 Big South indoor meet. Gardner-Webb's Terry Davis took home the title at 47-4.25, jumping 1.25 inches longer than second-place Christopher Cleare of Campbell and third-place Avery Coe of Charleston Southern. Other than that trio, other triple jumpers to watch include the No. 1 seed (Charleston Southern freshman EJ Reddick), last year's outdoor runner-up (Coastal Carolina's JaDarrell Barnette) and the 2011 outdoor conference champion (Liberty's Chris Johnson).

Men's High Jump
Event Schedule: Final – Friday at 1 p.m.
Defending Champion: Kyle Wheeler (Liberty) – 7-1 (2.16m)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Wheeler
2013 Indoor Champion: Kyle Wheeler (Liberty) – 6-9.5 (2.07m)
2013 Leader: Avion Jones (VMI) – 6-11 (2.11m)
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 8 (Kyle Wheeler - 2012)
Liberty Entrants: Kyle Wheeler and Patrick Donigan
Outlook: Friday afternoon's men's high jump competition will mark the sixth head-to-head meeting between Liberty sophomore Kyle Wheeler and VMI freshman Avion Jones. Wheeler owns a 3-2 record against Jones, highlighted by a victory at the Big South indoor meet in February. Wheeler, who has won all three Big South high jump championships he has competed for in his career, will try to become the first Flame to win back-to-back outdoor high jump titles since Nick Anderson in 2000 and 2001. Meanwhile, Jones is seeded No. 1 at 6-11, slightly ahead of Wheeler's season-best clearance of 6-10.75. Liberty freshman Patrick Donigan hopes for a reprise of his surprise third-place finish at the 2013 Big South indoor meet.

Men's Pole Vault
Event Schedule: Final – Saturday at 1 p.m.
Defending Champion: Kolby Shepherd (Liberty) – 16-0.75 (4.90m) (Second in a row)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Cody Fridgen (Liberty) – 2nd place
2013 Indoor Champion: Cody Bingham (Liberty) – 15-5 (4.70m)
2013 Leader: Cody Bingham (Liberty) – 16-4.75 (5.00m)
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 13 (Kolby Shepherd - 2012)
Liberty Entrants: Cody Bingham, Cody Fridgen, Ken Ritchey and Harrison Allen
Outlook: The men's pole vault has traditionally been one of Liberty's best events at the Big South outdoor meet, as the Flames have won 13 titles in 19 years, including the last three in a row. It will be difficult to replicate last year's 1-2-3-4 finish, thanks to the talented freshman duo of Gardner-Webb's Tyler Samotis and High Point's Austin Miller. However, the Flames still figure to fare well. Liberty redshirt freshman Cody Bingham captured the Big South indoor pole vault title and is the top seed at 16-4.75. Teammate Cody Fridgen was the Big South outdoor men's pole vault champion in 2010 and has cleared 15-3 this season.

Men's Shot Put
Event Schedule: Final – Friday at Noon
Defending Champion: Ryan Smith (Liberty) – 55-2.25 (16.82m) (Third in a row)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Smith
2013 Indoor Champion: Ryan Smith (Liberty) – 59-0.25 (17.99m)
2013 Leader: Ryan Smith (Liberty) – 57-6.5 (17.54m)
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 9 (Ryan Smith - 2012)
Liberty Entrants: Ryan Smith, Jacob DeValve and Andrew Woodley
Outlook: Liberty redshirt senior Ryan Smith will attempt to make conference history in the men's shot put. The No. 1 seed at 57-6.5, Smith could become the first Big South athlete ever to sweep the conference indoor and outdoor titles in an event for four straight seasons. His greatest challenge could come from Gardner-Webb's Alex Young, the Men's Outstanding Field Performer and Men's Freshman of the Year at the 2013 Big South indoor meet. Young's top mark of the season is 56-4.5. Flames Jacob DeValve and Andrew Woodley also aim to post lofty finishes. DeValve placed third indoors, while freshman Woodley has boosted his personal-best to 51-9.25 this season, ranking sixth in the conference.

Men's Discus
Event Schedule: Final – Saturday at 10 a.m.
Defending Champion: Ryan Smith (Liberty) – 169-11 (51.79m)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Smith
2013 Leader: Mark Britton (Winthrop) – 166-11 (50.88m)
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 13 (Ryan Smith - 2012)
Liberty Entrant: Ryan Smith
Outlook: Liberty throwers have won six straight Big South men's discus titles and 13 championships in the 19-year history of the Big South Outdoor Track & Field Championships. With Tim Abbott and David Scouten both redshirting the 2013 season, defending champion Ryan Smith is the Flames' only hope to keep the streak alive. Smith is seeded fourth in the conference at 158-10, trailing a trio of underclassmen. Winthrop sophomore Mark Britton tops the Big South chart at 166-11, trailed by Gardner-Webb freshman Alex Young at 165-9 and Coastal Carolina freshman Jordan Roach at 164-10.

Men's Javelin
Event Schedule: Final – Thursday at 4 p.m.
Defending Champion: Jason Flanagan (Coastal Carolina) – 239-6 (73.01m)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Christian Spaulding (High Point) – 3rd place
2013 Leader: Jackson Corcoran (Coastal Carolina) – 223-8 (68.17m)
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 9 (Elliot Galeone - 2011)
Liberty Entrants: Daniel Klase, Jacob DeValve and Cody Bingham
Outlook: On paper, the men's javelin competition shapes up as a sophomore showdown between Coastal Carolina's Jackson Corcoran and High Point's Christian Spaulding. Corcoran owns the Big South's longest throw of 2013, 223-8. Spaulding, who placed third in this event a year ago, was victorious in his first appearance at the new-look Matthes-Hopkins Track Complex, April 5 at the Liberty Collegiate Invitational. Liberty's top two entrants, Jacob DeValve and Daniel Klase, came in fifth and sixth, respectively, in 2012.

Men's Hammer
Event Schedule: Final – Thursday at 11 a.m. (Campus East)
Defending Champion: Carson Sears (Gardner-Webb) – 200-11 (61.24m)
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: Ryan Smith (Liberty) – 2nd place
2013 Indoor Champion (Weight): Alex Young (Gardner-Webb) – 67-11.75 (20.72m)
2013 Leader: Ryan Smith (Liberty) – 195-11 (59.71m)
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 3 (Jon Hart - 2008)
Liberty Entrant: Ryan Smith
Outlook: The men's hammer, the very first event of the meet, will feature the first of three head-to-head clashes between Liberty redshirt senior Ryan Smith and Gardner-Webb freshman Alex Young. Smith, the 2012 Big South runner-up, is seeded No. 1 at 195-11, two feet and four inches ahead of Young's season-best mark. Radford senior Curtis Hodge will be another top contender, entering the meet with a season-best 193-0 heave to his credit.

Men's Decathlon
Event Schedule: Day One – Begins Thursday at 2:20 p.m.; Day Two – Begins Friday at 11 a.m.
Defending Champion: Jacob DeValve (Liberty) – 6,904
Top Returnee from 2012 Meet: DeValve
2013 Indoor Champion (Heptathlon): Antonio Wood (VMI) – 5,153
2013 Leader: Cody Bingham (Liberty) – 6,785
Liberty Event Titles (Last): 9 (Jacob DeValve - 2012)
Liberty Entrants: Alex Geniesse and Tevan McIntire
Outlook: Liberty decathletes have won the Big South title nine times in the 12 years the event has been contested at the conference meet. However, defending champion Jacob DeValve and conference-leading Cody Bingham will focus on individual events this week. Neither of 2012's other All-Big South decathletes (second-place Antonio Wood of VMI and third-place Tristan Faure of High Point) has completed a decathlon thus far this season, but both are entered. The Flames' Tevan McIntire placed fourth a year ago and third (behind Wood and Faure) in this year's Big South heptathlon competition.