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Florida Gators win NCAA men’s track and field championship

The Gators’ Joseph Fahnbulleh wins the 100 and 200 meters. Florida State finishes fourth with one individual title.
Joseph Fahnbulleh, seen here competing for Liberia at the Olympics last year, wins the 100 and 200 meters for Florida at the NCAA outdoor championships Friday in Eugene, Ore., as the Gators win the national title.
Joseph Fahnbulleh, seen here competing for Liberia at the Olympics last year, wins the 100 and 200 meters for Florida at the NCAA outdoor championships Friday in Eugene, Ore., as the Gators win the national title. [ PETR DAVID JOSEK | AP ]
Published Jun. 11

EUGENE, Ore. — Florida won the NCAA men’s outdoor track and field title Friday night behind Joseph Fahnbulleh’s wins in the 100 and 200 meters.

The Gators, who totaled 54 points, won their fifth national title and first since winning back to back in 2016 and ‘17. Texas was second with 38 points. Florida State was fourth with 33, its highest finish since 2012.

Fahnbulleh, who competed for Liberia at the Tokyo Olympics last year, won the 100 first in a personal-best 10 seconds. Tennessee freshman Favour Ashe was second in 10.08.

“I just did my race plan, and that was it,” Fahnbulleh said. He is Florida’s first 100 champion since Jeff Demps in 2010.

Fahnbulleh won the 200 later in the evening at Hayward Field, finishing in 19.83 ahead of Matthew Boling of Georgia. Florida also won the 1,600 relay.

Florida State’s Trey Cunningham, the back-to-back ACC champion, won the 110 hurdles in a personal-best 13 seconds. Cunningham also won the 60 hurdles at the indoor championships.

Wisconsin’s Olin Hacker won the 5,000, surging in the final 80 meters to finish in 13 minutes, 27.73 seconds. His father, Tim Hacker, won the 1985 NCAA cross-country championship.

“It’s one of those things, I came into this race, this is what I wanted, this is what I dreamed about, and they were kind of stressful dreams, to be honest,” Hacker said, laughing. “I thought I could do it, but it wasn’t real and I didn’t know what it would feel like. It felt amazing.”

North Carolina A&T’s Randolph Ross defended his outdoor title in the 400 and got the indoor-outdoor sweep in the event. Ross was part of the gold-medal-winning U.S. 1,600 relay team at the Tokyo Games.

Texas Tech senior Moad Zahafi won the 800 in 1:44.49. Earlier this year, he ran the event in 1:43.79, the third-fastest time in NCAA history.

“I came here with one goal, just like everyone else, to win,” Zahafi said. “It’s my last meet at Texas Tech, so I want to give it all, and I want to win for my team.”

Washington sophomore Joe Waskom won the 1,500 in 3:45.58, besting Mario Garcia Romo of Ole Miss. Sean Burrell of LSU defended his title in the 400 hurdles in 48.70, and Eastern Kentucky’s Ahmed Jaziri won the steeplechase title in 8:18.70.

Southern California won the 400 relay.

The women’s finals are set for Saturday.

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