Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Harun Abda Earns Big Ten Track Awards

University of Minnesota junior Harun Abda was named the Big Ten Track Athlete of the Year, the conference announced yesterday.

The Fridley High School alumnus was also named the conference's Co-Track Athlete of the Big Ten Championships, sharing that honor with Indiana’s Andrew Bayer.

Abda won individual titles at the Big Ten Championships last weekend in the 400-meters and 600-meters. Abda, in his fist competition at the distance this season, won the 400m in 46.51. He clocked a 1:15.86 for the 600m, a new Big Ten meet and all-time record.

“Awards are well deserved for Harun Abda,” Steve Plasencia, the University of Minnesota head coach, said. “He has not lost a race all season and he has the fastest time in the country (1:46.97) in the 800m. He had a tough weekend doing double duty in the 400m and 600m, but came through in flying colors and has run great 4x400 legs for us. He has had a super indoor season so far and we are excited about having him run at the NCAA Championships next weekend.”

The Big Ten Conference also announced the 2012 All-Big Ten first and second team award winners. Minnesota landed three athletes on the first team list and two on the second team. Named to the first team were Abda, Hassan Mead and Micah Hegerle. Earning a spot on the second team were David Pachuta and Jack Szmanda.

Gophers Ranked #9 ... The University of Minnesota men's team is currently ranked #9 in the latest NCAA Division I Indoor Track and Field rankings.

Florida leads the rankings, followed by Arkansas and Texas A&M. The Gophers are the only Big Ten team ranked in the top-10.

Find the complete rankings HERE.

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