Track Shark's 2009 Men's Indoor Preview
Tom Borish has put together a men's preview for the 2009 season. Here are his comments on the weight throw:
Weight Throw / '08 Champion: Egor Agafonov, Kansas - 74-06.25 *
As a freshman for North Carolina, Walter Henning hit 72-03 for third place at the NCAA's and clearly showed that he's one of the best up-and-coming talent that the U.S. has seen in a long time. Fast-forward almost a year later, Henning finds himself at a new school and a new sense of accomplishment. Now wearing the purple and gold of LSU, Henning broke his own American junior record of 252-04 in the hammer throw at the World Junior Championships this past summer to take gold in the process. After an outstanding outdoor season which saw him redshirt due to the transfer, Henning is in solid shape for the weight throw title. Missouri's Chris Rohr did have a great regular season in 2008, with his best performance of 73-06.50 on February 29. The NCAA indoor championships, however, told a different story as Rohr could only manage to throw 70-00.25 for eighth place. The senior looks to make the best of his final season as a Tiger and appears to have the best shot at the crown. UCLA's Boldizsar Kocsor also enters his final season and enters 2009 with the most experience among any of the top contenders. With Kocsor's focus only on the weight/hammer, don't be surprised if the American comes out on top. Simon Wardhaugh of Boise State already opened his season with a personal-best throw of 73-00 which punched his ticket to College Station. Wardhaugh placed fifth last year and the only returning athletes who beat him head-to-head are Henning and Jon Pullum of Purdue. Others to keep a close eye on should include Matt Wauters of Idaho, Steffen Nerdal of Memphis, Jake Shanklin of Wyoming and Matej Muza of Virginia Tech.
I agree with most of Tom's comments, which isn't that much a surprise since I helped him out with his preview. However, I think he underestimates Simon Wardhaugh of Boise State, who mentions in passing. Wardhaugh seems to be in great shape and has been due for a breakthrough. Here is my early predicted order of finish at the NCAA Championships: (1) Wardhaugh; (2) Henning; (3) Kocsor; (4) Rohr; (5) Nerdal; (6) Muza; (7) Shanklin and (8) Pullum. This is just a shot in the dark since most of these throwers have not yet competed this season. We'll learn a lot more in the coming weeks. As I did last year, I'll be putting together weekly rankings once the season is underway. Check back for those.