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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


    “Football’s Cason joins track team, runs Sat.”

    Antoine Cason
    Antoine Cason

    The track and field team will debut a familiar face tomorrow in Flagstaff, when football’s Antoine Cason begins his collegiate track career at the Springco Invitational.

    Cason, a junior cornerback who led the team with three interceptions last season, will compete in the 60-meter dash when the track team competes in its final meet before the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships Feb. 23-24.

    “”I was interested (in joining the track team) since I got here, but I couldn’t do it because the coaches wanted me to get the defensive system down,”” said Cason, who has spent the past two offseasons learning the intricacies of the Arizona defense.

    UA track and field head coach Fred Harvey said he’s been trying to get Cason to join his team since his freshman year.

    “”We’re very excited,”” Harvey said. “”It adds another piece to our puzzle in terms of our pursuit of a Pac-10 Championship.””

    Cason has been practicing with the track team for the past three weeks. He competed on his high school track team and said the transition back to the track has been rather smooth.

    “”It’s fun getting out of the blocks again, there’s a lot of fundamentals that the coaches are helping me re-teach myself,”” he said.

    Harvey said that Cason has been able to carry over his short-acceleration speed from the football field and is making progress with his endurance with each week on the track.

    “”I absolutely promise you there will not be a (wide) receiver that will take off in an all-out sprint and leave (Cason) behind next season,”” Harvey said. “”It will truly benefit him as an NFL draftee next year.””

    Cason was already close to several track athletes due to the amount of time they have spent in the weight room together.

    “”We used to line up next to each other in every practice in football,”” said senior sprinter Troy Harris, a walk-on wide receiver with the football team last season. “”It’ll be cool see him on the track.””

    The track team has spent the indoor season traveling between Albuquerque, N.M., and Flagstaff. This will be its third trip to Flagstaff in four weeks.

    “”I can’t wait to run on (Flagstaff’s track) again. It feels like a hometown track,”” said Harris, who broke the school record in the 60m at the Feb. 10 New Mexico Invitational.

    The women’s 4x400m relay team, made up of seniors Marquita Taylor and Nikki Martin and freshmen Christina Rodgers and Tifney Reeve, will go against “”some pretty heated”” competition, Harvey said.

    “”Our (team) is right now qualified for a slower heat, but they are capable of running with anyone in the conference,”” he said.

    This distance contingent will not travel to the Invitational because the high altitude would hinder its chances of achieving qualifying times for the NCAA Indoor Championships March 9-10, Harvey said.

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