The season may have been cut short but the postseason accolades have poured in for the UCLA Bruins. In fact, 12 All-American honors were dished out to 10 different athletes following the shortened season of 2020.
Despite the coronavirus pandemic cancelling the NCAA Championships, the Bruins were incredible well represented in the United States Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association All-American list this past week.
Shae Anderson, Catherine Leger, Makenzy Pierre-Webster and Meleni Rodney were selected as All-Americans for the 4x400m relay. Anderson also was award honors for the 400m race.
Star field athlete Alyssa Wilson garnered All-American honors for the weight throw and shot put, making her third straight AA appearance. She had the nation’s second-best weight throw this past season and entered the championships with the eight-best shot put mark of 17.43m this season.
Anderson transferred from Oregon and broke the UCLA indoor 400m record two different times, entering the championships of 52.07, reflected due to altitude to a 52.18 that ranked ninth in the country.
Their historic 4x400m relay squad set the school record for indoor relay time of 3:30.28 just weeks after reaching the second-best time in school history. They’re now owners of the first and third-best 4x400m relay times in school history.
On the men’s side of things, Kenroy Higgins II earned All-American status for the 60m while Riley Kelly, Chris Morzenti, Arturo Sotomayor and Ismail Turner each received AA honors for the distance medley relay.
Higgins had the seventh-fastest 60m time in the nation this season, taking second place at the MPSF Indoor Championships while setting a new UCLA record for the event.
The DMR team notched a time of 9:32.42 which is the third-fastest time in school history.
Despite the coronavirus-shortened season, the 12 All-American awards showcase just how dominant the Bruins team was to start this season and entering the NCAA Championships. Due to the shortened version of the season, the committee had to adopt a new criteria for All-American distinction:
- “Individual events: All student-athletes listed on the startlist for the anticipated event.”
- “Relay events: The four student-athletes per anticipated relay who produced the performance that was declared and accepted into their event. Those listed as alternatives will not be recognized.”
- “There will not be a distinction of ‘first-team’, ‘second-team’, or ‘honorable mention’ to these recognitions.”
Either way, new criteria or not, the Bruins were a serious threat to bring home some national championships this season and the All-American status prove that.