Track Regionals To Stick Around In 2011
There was much debate as to the merits of the new Regional format for track and field which made its debut this season, but athletes will have the same system in place for at least one more season, as the NCAA Division I Championships/Sports Management Cabinet ruled that the proposed new system needed more evaluation.
This year, the country was split in two with the West gathering in Austin, Texas and the East in Greensboro, North Carolina for NCAA preliminary rounds. Athletes had to finish in the top-12 in their respective region to move on to the semis or finals in Eugene, Oregon. Arguments against the system included travel costs, and a heavy workload on some athletes, especially distance runners.
The NCAA Cabinet was considering a proposal termed "24/8" which would send the top-24 athletes in every event straight to NCAAs based on best marks from the year, just as NCAA Indoor qualifying works. Then the top-eight conference champions not among the top-24 in each event would be added to round out the field. But that proposal will have to wait at least another year.
Schools will now bid to host the 2011 West and East NCAA Preliminary sites in advance of the NCAA Championships next year in Des Moines, Iowa.
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