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Arkansas freshman Hibbert a Bowerman Award finalist

by Andrew Joseph | June 27, 2023 at 4:04 p.m.
Arkansas' Jaydon Hibbert jumps at the SEC Outdoor Track and Field Championships in Baton Rouge, La., on May 13, 2023.

FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas freshman Jaydon Hibbert was named one of three male finalists for The Bowerman by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association on Tuesday.

The award is annually presented to the most outstanding collegiate track and field athlete. Hibbert is the third Razorback male to be named a finalist, following Jarrion Lawson (2016) and Ayden Owens-Delerme (2022). Lawson won the award. 

“What a great honor for Jaydon and the university,” Arkansas coach Chris Bucknam said in a press release. “He had a great season this year and did a phenomenal job. I’m just really proud of how he came into a new system, new way of life, following our collegiate way of doing things, and accomplished a lot of goals this year.”

The Bowerman will be presented Dec. 14 during the USTFCCCA Convention in Aurora, Colo. Hibbert is a finalist along with a pair of decathletes, Leo Neugebauer of Texas and Kyle Garland of Georgia.

Hibbert, a native of Kingston, Jamaica, is the first freshman finalist in the award's history. He swept SEC and NCAA titles during the indoor and outdoor seasons with record-breaking performances in the triple jump.

He claimed the NCAA indoor title with a leap of 57 feet, 6 1/2 inches, which broke Arkansas legend Mike Conley’s record of 57-1 that had stood since 1985. 

At the SEC Outdoor Championships, Hibbert shattered the collegiate record set in 1982 by nearly a foot with a 58-7 1/2 mark.

“Over the years we’ve probably had some recruits in here who have looked at our history of marks in the jumps and thought I’ll never break a school record here I’m going to go somewhere else,” Bucknam said. “That’s not how Jaydon handled it. He looked at it as a bar to shoot for and he surpassed it. Again, his competitiveness, the way he listens and executes, we’re really proud and happy for him.”

Neugebauer put on an impressive display in the decathlon at the NCAA Outdoor Championships, accruing a collegiate record of 8,836 points. Garland won the heptathlon at the NCAA Indoor Championships with 6,639 points and earned two of the four highest decathlon scores in NCAA history at the SEC and NCAA outdoor meets.

Hibbert will share the spotlight in Colorado with fellow Razorback Britton Wilson, who was named one of three female finalists for The Bowerman on Monday. The award recognizes a male and female winner each year, and this is the first time Arkansas has had a finalist for both awards.


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