Tavaris Tate 44.86

March 27, 2010

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. - Mississippi State men’s and women’s track and field teams were as perfect as the weather in its third day of competition at the 2010 Alabama Relays. State captured four event crowns and set two freshman records while at Sam Bailey Track and Field Complex Saturday.

“Today was great,” head coach Al Schmidt said. "We did really well, and I think our kids had a very impressive day. "

[b]Freshman Tavaris Tate stole the show by winning the 400-meter dash by nearly four seconds. Tate, a Starkville, Miss., native and world indoor gold medalist, ran 44.86 seconds to set an Alabama meet record, MSU freshman record and move to second all-time in MSU history.

“Tavaris’ performance today was just amazing,” Schmidt said. “He has the No. 1 time in the U.Ss right now and easily punched his ticket for the first round of the NCAA Championships.”[/b]

Lady Bulldog freshman Jody-Ann Muir also found her way into MSU record books in the 400-meter dash. The Jamaican native ran 53.75 seconds to break a 17-year-old freshman record and move to second all-time in MSU history.

“Jody-Ann definitely put herself in the first round of NCAAs with her performance today,” Schmidt said. “It’s still early and she will run faster than that this year, but with her time today she’s in.”

Tuscaloosa native Kendall May sprinted past the field in the 200-meter dash to win the event in 21.09 seconds. After sitting out of competition in 2009 due to injury, May showed he had returned with his 2nd MSU all-time performance.

Senior All-American Wendy Copeland opened her outdoor season in the long jump by winning the event with a leap of 19 feet, 11.50 inches.

“I think both Kendall and Wendy had top East Region performances today,” Schmidt added. “You have to be in the Top 48 in the region to get in, and they will do better as the season goes along, but today’s performance gets them in early.”

Other notable MSU performances from Saturday were Emmanuel Mayers second-place finish in the 400-meter hurdles (50.86 seconds). Deaundre Barnaby’s fourth-place in the 400-meter dash (48.35 seconds), Gerron Hendricks fourth-place finish in the 200-meter dash (21.66), Richessa McCaleb’s third-place finish in the 100-meter dash (11.91 seconds), Crystal Wilson’s third-place finish in the 200-meter dash (24.44 seconds) and Chloe Phillips fifth-place finish in the 1500-meter run (4:36.27).

State competes for the final day in Tuscaloosa Sunday beginning at 8 a.m.

Day 3 Results


Long Jump Winner: Tyler Terry, 24-01.50, SE Missouri
MSU: 8. Kendrick Poullard, 22-08.00; 12. Josh Tucker, 21-09.00

200-Meter Dash Winner: Kendall May, 21.09, Mississippi State
MSU: 4. Gerron Hendricks, 21.66

400-Meter Hurdles Winner: Lee Moore, 50.00; Ole Miss
MSU: 2. Emmanuel Mayers, 50.86

5000-Meter Run Winner: Julius Bor, 3:48.52, Alabama
MSU: 36. Julian Duarte, 4:13.84; 37. Kyle Balderson, 4:14.68; 45. Mitch Weegman, 4:22.33; 46. Nick Perkins, 4:22.63

400-Meter Dash Winner: Tavaris Tate, 44.86, Mississippi State
MSU: 4. Deaundre Barnaby, 48.35


5,000-Meter Run Winner: Juli Koenegstein, 17:40.33, SE Missouri
MSU: 35. Eileen Riley, 19:30.41

Long Jump Winner: Wendy Copeland, 19-11.50, Mississippi State
100-Meter Dash Winner: LaJada Baldwin, 11.53, Ole Miss
MSU: 3. Richesa McCaleb, 11.91

800-Meter Run Winner: Bianca LeBlanc, 2:13.97, UAB
MSU: 13. Chelsea Rae Smyth, 2:17.41; 31. Christina Coleman, 2:30.27

High Jump Winner: Nora Mehl, 5-10.50, UAB
MSU: 5. Jessica Merriweather, 5-07; 11. Alyssa Hall, 5-03

200-Meter Dash Winner: LaJada Baldwin, 23.76, Ole Miss
MSU: 3. Crystal Wilson, 24.44; 6. Taneisha Baker, 24.64

Shot Put Winner: Chandra Brewer, 56-01.25, Unattached
MSU: 35. Jessica Merriweather, 28-11.75

400-Meter Hurdles Winner: Sofie Persson, 58.33, Ole Miss
MSU: 4. Talisha Lee, 1:00.95

1500-Meter Run Winner: Vasity Chemweno, 4:31.10
MSU: 5. Chloe Phillips, 4:36.27; 17. Simone Domingue, 4:52.28; 18. Kelly Karcher, 4:53.86; 21. Dominique Lockart, 4:54.38; 25. Kalli Dalton, 4:56.18; 37. Anna Jarman, 5:05.41; 39. Haley Greenwell, 5:05.85

400-Meter Dash Winner: Jody-Ann Muir, 53.75, Mississippi State

Boy is bad. See him every week at the track and he can flat out fly.

Well please give us all a few ideas of what his 400m training consists of. Maybe post it under Fundamentals in the “Lactate Threshold” thread which is very much about 400m training ideas and insights. Thanks 1r1400

I’ll ask the coach. His dad pretty much coaches him, coached him as a kid and through high school. He may still coach him, at least a lot of his programming, even though he is a student athlete. Just from observing it looks like “old school”. I’ll start paying attention to what they are doing. Steve Mullings brother also runs there.

Tate emerging as a young star for U.S. track team
Chances are that even if you are remotely familiar with the USA’s powerhouse 4x400m relay, you might not know of Tavaris Tate. But learn the name. Judging by the blistering third leg the 19-year-old ran to help the U.S. team advance at the World Indoor Championships Saturday, he is a future star. Watch meet highlights at 6 p.m. ET on UniSports TV.

By Joe Battaglia, Universal Sports | Posted: Mar 13, 12:40a ET | Updated: Mar 13, 9:40p ET
Related to this article
World Indoor Champs.: Day 2 - Morning Session
Watch the entire morning session from Day 2 of the IAAF World Indoor Championships on demand.

World Indoors: U.S. men advance in 4x400m »
WIC: Day 2 - Men’s Morning Session
Check out photos from the men’s morning session events on Day 2 of the World Indoor Track & Field Championships in Doha, Qatar.

World Indoor Championships Central »
WIC Results: Men’s 4x400m heats »
DOHA, Qatar - As Greg Nixon of the U.S. rounded the track on the first lap of the men’s 4x400m relay, he had a great view of Jamaica’s leadoff runner Edino Steele.

But, as an athlete, that’s not exactly one of the vistas you would pay extra for.

Team USA’s second leg, LeJerald Betters closed the gap to about even, but never opened a significant advantage of any kind.

That left things to the USA’s third leg, Tavaris Tate.

Right now if you’re asking yourself, “Who is Tavaris Tate?” it’s okay. You’re probably not alone.

Chances are that even if you are remotely familiar with the USA’s powerhouse 4x400m relay and names like LaShawn Merritt and Jeremy Wariner, you wouldn’t know of Tate.

But you better get acclimated.


Tate, just a collegiate freshman and the youngest member of Team USA at age 19, took the baton from Betters and immediately exploded to the front. By the time he completed his leg, in 45.60 seconds, and handed off to anchor Kerron Clement, there was no doubt the U.S. would win its heat and advance to Sunday’s final at the IAAF World Indoor Championships.

“I knew we were in a crowd,” Tate said in assessing his performance. “LeJerald had given me a little step on the other teams. My main focus was to get Kerron the stick in the first spot, so I pushed myself out the first 200m, I relaxed my second 50 and gave it all I had in my last 150.”

Most runners of Tate’s age in the U.S. are currently in Fayetteville, Arkansas competing at the NCAA Indoor Championships. But because Mississippi State does not have an indoor program, Tate was able to compete at the USA Indoor Championships in Albuquerque last month. He finished fourth in the open 400m in 46.24, earning a spot in the U.S. relay pool for Worlds.

The rarity of the achievement isn’t lost on Tate, who remains humbled to find himself in this position.

“I’m 19 years old so it’s a big compliment for me,” Tate said. “I just thank the Lord for giving me the opportunity and ability to showcase the gift that he’s blessed me with. I look at this as a building stage of my profession.”

Tate is not a total stranger to international competition. Last year, he won silver in the 400m in 45.50 seconds and gold on the 4x400m at the Pan-Am Junior Championships in Port au Spain, Trinidad.

But the difference between Pan-Am Juniors and World Indoors is like Kansas and Oz, something Tate knew well coming here.

“I made the junior team last year in the open 400m and I anchored the 4x400m, where I split 44.8,” Tate said. “But coming into the World seniors, I knew I had to step my game up totally because I’m not running against kids no more. These are grown men. My training and work ethic had to be on par with everyone who’s on the track with me.”

Tate said since last year, he has put in more hours training to prepare for the step up in competition, and that being around college athletes - “Guys who really want it,” as he put it - has helped. But Tate is also still young enough to be motivated by paternal pressure.

“It’s mostly been my dad,” Tate said. “He’s not here and that’s basically why I’m running hard. I know if he was here, he would be on me the whole way.”

Despite his youth and relative inexperience, Tate has earned the respect of his older teammates, including Clement, who knows a thing or two about making a mark early in his career.

In 2005, when he too was 19-years-old, Clement shocked the world when, as a sophomore at Florida, he won the 400m at the NCAA Indoor Championships in 44.57, breaking Michael Johnson’s world record of 44.63.

“Tavaris is a part of the team and we’re together so I didn’t have a problem with it,” Clement said when asked what it was like getting the baton from a teenager. “I came up when I was young too. I think it’s a good thing to start young.”

Good for Tate, and certainly good for Team USA.

From the WIC @ Doha:


Unfortunately I haven’t seen much of Tate over the last few weeks. He may be training a different time of the day or something. But the Thu before his run in Tuscaloosa I know he did 300, 250, 200 and I heard low 20.xx for the 200 if memory serves me correct. They were resting 10min or so between runs. He did relay practice on Fri.