Former Gibbs track star Trayvon Bromell goes pro
In the past year, Baylor’s Trayvon Bromell became a hot commodity in the world of track and field, so much that the former Gibbs High standout knew he would have to eventually weigh becoming a professional or keeping his college eligibility.
On Wednesday, Bromell decided to turn pro by signing a multi-year endorsement contract with New Balance. The shoe company announced the decision with a story on its website.
Bromell, 20, has already solidified himself as the premier up-and-coming 100-meter sprinter in the nation, if not the world. Signing with New Balance allows Bromell to make money on the pro circuit while training for the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Bromell said in July that if he turned pro he would still get his college degree, a promise he made to his mother, Shri Sanders.
"I know I'm probably not like everyone else because I love college,” Bromell said. “I love gaining knowledge. And I know that a college degree to going to eventually help me get a job once I'm finished with track. It's not going to last forever.
"Whatever I do, I will make sure my college education is paid for."
Bromell has had a meteoric rise in his sport. In 2013 he was named the Gatorade national boys track athlete of the year while at Gibbs. As a freshman at Baylor last year, Bromell won the 100 at the NCAA outdoor championships in a wind-legal 9.97 seconds to set the world junior record (under 20). He was the only sprinter in the field to finish in under 10 seconds and became the first freshman to win the 100 since Florida State's Walter Dix in 2005.
This year he won the NCAA 200 indoor title and finished second in the 100 at the outdoor championships. He followed that up by taking second at the U.S. championships and third at the world championships behind world record Usain Bolt and Justin Gatlin.
And Bromell has not even hit his stride yet. He was 17 when he first broke 10 seconds in the 100 and has done it 13 times since.
Bolt, Gatlin, Tyson Gay and Asafa Powell never ran a sub-10 second race as teenagers.