A week ago I saw where Coach MacNeill had retweeted Jason Kerr, a Gryphon Track & Field coach who works with the team’s sprinters. The obvious message was … Guelph is a great place for two-sport athletes.
That started me thinking about some recent Gryphon football players who were two sport athletes. A good current example is Job Reinhart who is competing with the Gryphon Wrestling team. Signed recruit Simon Chaves also plans to wrestle in university. There are a number of other two-sport Gryphons I can think of and I hope to write about in the future.
The recent success of Gryphon football players running track at the USport level is worth looking at all on its own. It is something I have tried to keep up with.
In recent years the Gryphons have signed some football recruits with excellent track & field backgrounds. They don’t all continue to compete in both sports at the USport level but this year they are having an impact as sprinters. In indoor track, both USports and NCAA, 60 Meters is only short distance race. There are no 50 or 100 Meter races.
The Gryphon Mens T&F team is currently ranked #1 in Canada. Traditionally, UofG has excelled in the middle and longer distances (600, 1000, 1500 & 3000M) and not been as strong in the shorter distances (60M & 300M). Some of that newfound sprint success is coming from two-sport football/track athletes.
A look at this Winter’s OUA rankings for the 60 Meters shows that Guelph is dominating with 7 athletes posting performances in the top 11. Four of those 7 top OUA sprint times were run by football players.
Leading those two-sport athletes is Keysean Powell who has run the third fastest 60M time in the country. Powell has been quite consistent with best times of 6.87, 6.88 and 6.92 seconds in 3 meets. In fact, even the slowest of those 3 times would still have him tied for 3rd in the country.
Right behind Powell are Matt Creelman, Jayden Kelly and Jason Richards who are ranked 7th, 8th and 11th among OUA sprinters, and 8th, 14th and 19th nationally. Kyle Sinden, who combined football and track as a freshman and is now concentrating on track, is ranked 29th nationally.
Guelph is not the only USport team with two-sport athletes. When I scanned through the 300+ names on the 60M rankings I recognized numerous football players. For example, two Univ. of Regina athletes are ranked 11th & 131st; a York RB is ranked 77th; a pair of Western players are 120th & 191st; a pair of McMaster DBs are 120th & 142nd; a Queen’s DB is 127th.
To put this all in perspective … of the 5 football players ranked in the USport top 20 in the 60 Meters this year, four are Gryphons. The fifth is actually a CFL player finishing his degree at the Univ. of Regina. His name is Tevaughn Campbell and he’s best known for breaking the electronic 40 record at the 2015 CFL combine.