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Committee adds competitors to DI track and field preliminary-round meets

The two expanded competitions will be held over four days instead of three

The Division I Competition Oversight Committee on Wednesday approved expanding the number of participants who will compete in individual events and added an additional day to the Division I men’s and women’s outdoor track and field preliminary-round meets.

Due to pandemic protocol guidelines issued by the NCAA COVID-19 Medical Advisory Group, the Division I Men’s and Women’s Track and Field Committee in January recommended reducing the number of student-athletes competing in each individual event to 32. This was based on suggestions to reduce the number of preliminary-round sites and reduce the field in sports with large numbers of participants.

The original recommendation was confirmed by the Competition Oversight Committee. However, to maximize postseason opportunities for student-athletes, the committee decided to increase the number of student-athletes in individual events in the preliminary rounds to 48 after considering that health and safety and testing logistics could be managed with an additional day of competition.

The move to 48 returns the meets’ individual events to the same number of competitors as before the pandemic.

The track and field preliminary-round meets will be conducted over four days, May 26-29, at North Florida and Texas A&M. Previously, the meets were scheduled to be three-day competitions.

The number of relay teams per event remains at 24, the same number that competed in pre-pandemic years.