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COLUMBUS, Ohio – Two weeks removed from a win over rival Michigan, the Ohio State men’s track and field team looks for another big weekend as it travels to University Park, Pa. for the Penn State National Invitational Jan. 29-30.

The Friday-Saturday event is one of the nation’s most respected indoor competitions, regularly drawing some of college track and field’s best teams and athletes. The Buckeyes will be competing at the national invite for the second-consecutive season and for the third time in four years.

The invitational opens Friday at the Horace Ashenfelter III Indoor Track with the heptathlon at approximately 12:15 p.m. EST. The heptathlon will also open Saturday’s action at approximately 9:30 a.m. Live scoring will be available throughout the meet at www.GoPSUSports.com, with a complete recap available at the conclusion of Friday and Saturday’s proceedings at www.OhioStateBuckeyes.com.

Notable Opponents
Hampton
Georgetown
Pittsburgh
Penn State (featuring Joe Kovacs and Blake Eaton, ranked in the shot put Top 25)
No. 29 Tennessee
No. 13 Virginia Tech (featuring Keith Ricks, No. 12 in the 60m dash)

Accepted Entries
60m dash – Stephen Robinson
60m hurdles – Jonathan Francois
200m dash – Robinson, Matt Terrell
200m dash (Invitational) – Curtis Leuenberger, Thomas Murdaugh
400m dash – Rob Baisden, Marvel Brooks, Aaron Roberts
500m dashMarcus Brooks, Elon Simms
500m dash (Invitational) – Brandon Woodard
800m run – Jared Hall
800m run (Invitational) – Daniel White
1000m run (Invitational) – Daryl Murphy
Mile (Invitational) – Chad Balyo, Patrick Sovacool
3000m run – Paul Shivers
3000m run (Invitational) – Adam Green, Taylor Williams
5000m run (Invitational) – Green, Williams
High Jump – Ryan Blake
Pole Vault – Alan Dague
Pole Vault (Invitational) – Heath Nickles
Long Jump – Derek Blevins, Stephan MacDonald, Korbin Smith
Triple Jump – Blevins
Shot Put – Matt DeChant, Tyler Branch, Jared Collier
Weight Throw – DeChant, Collier, Billy Gehrig, Max Mays
Distance Medley
4x400m relay (Invitational)

*Events designated as an invitational feature more competitive fields.

Murdaugh Named Big Ten Athlete of the Week (Again)
The Big Ten Conference named Ohio State sophomore sprinter Thomas Murdaugh Big Ten Athlete of the Week Jan. 18 after his impressive performance at the Ohio State-Michigan Dual.

Murdaugh posted two meet records en route to a pair of top finishes during Ohio State’s 92-70 victory over Michigan on Jan. 16. The Dublin, Ohio native was dominant once again in the 400m event, finishing in first-place with an NCAA provisional time of 46.58 – the second-best time in the NCAA this season. He sealed the Buckeye victory by anchoring the 4×400-meter relay team to first place and an NCAA provisional time of 3:12.60. The mark bested the Wolverines by five seconds and is the fastest of any Big Ten mile relay team so far this season. The award was the second of the season for Murdaugh, who shared the honor with Ryan Foster of Penn State.

Did You Know?

  • Ohio State head coach Robert Gary set the Ashenfelter Indoor Track record time in the 3000m run (7:58.51) as a competitor for Team Adidas in 2000.
  • Former Buckeyes hold a number of records at Ashenfelter: Dan Taylor owns records in the weight throw shot put (22.66m and 19.98m, respectively), Andrew Pierce the 400m dash title (45.56) and Ian Connor the top spot in the 5000m run (14:01.92). The 2001 4x400m relay team’s run of 3:07.78 still sits atop the PSU record books as well.
  • NBBJ of Columbus helped design Penn State’s multi-sport indoor facility, which was completed in the summer of 1999.

Last Time Out
The greatest rivalry in sports was renewed on the track Jan. 16 as the Ohio State men’s track and field team defeated Michigan, 92-70, in “The Dual.”

Ohio State was in midseason form inside the U-M Indoor Track Building, claiming wins in nine out of 15 events to capture a convincing win over the rival Wolverines.

The performance of the day for the Buckeyes came in the weight throw, where redshirt sophomore Max Mays shattered his previous personal record in the weight throw, claiming first-place and five points for the Buckeyes with an NCAA provisional toss of 19.52m (64-0.5), the second-best mark in the Big Ten so far this season. Michigan senior Sean Pruitt, the 2009 Big Ten indoor champion and Michigan school record holder in the weight throw, finished in second with a provisional qualifying mark of 19.41m (63-8.25). Matt DeChant finished third for the Buckeyes at 19.15m (62-10).

DeChant followed up his third-place finish in the weight with a win in the shot put (17.30m/56-9.25). U-M’s Pruitt settled for another runner-up finish at 17.21m (56-5.75), followed by OSU sophomore Tyler Branch.

The Scarlet and Gray swept the Top 3 spots in the 600m dash – senior Brandon Woodard led the way with a time of 1:19.95, followed by fellow senior Elon Simms (1:20.27) and freshman Marcus Brooks.

Freshman Korbin Smith won the long jump competition with a PR of 7.35m (24-1.5), the top mark in the Big Ten on the year. Michigan sophomore Robert Peddlar was second at 7.28m (23-10.75), followed by OSU freshman Derek Blevins (7.04m/23-1.25).

Redshirt freshman Heath Nickles finished first in the pole vault for the second-consecutive meet, clearing the bar at a PR height of 4.90m (16-0.75). Michigan senior Frank Shotwell took second for the Wolverines at 4.75m (15-7), followed by Buckeye Alan Dague (4.60m/15-1).

With the win, the Buckeyes regained the lead in the Dual series, 4-3. The teams meet again April 10 in Columbus.

Up Next
The Buckeyes are scheduled to compete at both the Notre Dame Meyo Invitational and Nebraska’s Frank Sevigne Husker Invitational Feb. 5-6.