The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

Mallet doing it all for Hawkeyes

It’s no surprise that sophomore Aaron Mallett has turned some heads and made a name for himself thus far in the 2014-15 season for the Iowa track and field team. If people are surprised, they shouldn’t be.

The road to success began when the sophomore was crowned a Big Ten runner-up at the indoor conference meet in the men’s 60-meter hurdles, along with a third-place finish in the men’s 1,600-meter relay. Mallett’s effort at the conference meet landed him a spot to compete at the NCAA Championships, where he recorded the highest NCAA 60-meter hurdles finish in school history, with a time of 7.79 — good for sixth. His performance snagged him an All-America honor as well.

If that wasn’t enough, Mallett opened the outdoor season at the Baldy Castillo in Tempe, Arizona, with a bang, winning the 110-meter hurdles with a personal best of 13.85, a time that ranks third in the nation and sixth on Iowa’s all-time list. Mallett also anchored the men’s 400-meter relay, which finished second with a time of 40.07 and sits at the No. 5 nationally. With this, Mallett was crowned the Big Ten Athlete of the Week on March 25.

“I had to go into the outdoor season and keep a level head like I did in the indoor season,” Mallett said. “I wanted to bring all the good energy from the indoor season, and I definitely found the success.”

Success, sure, but perhaps Mallet’s versatility as an asset that has been just as big for the Hawkeyes this season.

“He can do everything from the 100 hurdles, the 4×1 outdoors, all the way to the 400 hurdles, and the 4×4,” Iowa Director of Track and Field Joey Woody said. “You have to be smart with an athlete like that with the training and set them up for success in all the events.”

Although the sophomore has to compete and train for the large number of events, he is becoming more focused. He said the opportunity to compete in a number of events is more helpful than hurtful.

His teammates feed off his attitude and leadership.

One of those teammates, Brendan Thompson, who also competes on the 4×1 relay, has no worries when it comes to what Mallett can do.

“It’s inspiring to see all of his hard work paying off considering he’s only a sophomore, and he’s accomplishing all of these things,” Thompson said. “It drives me to continue to work hard day in and day out.”

With much more to go in the outdoor season, Mallett is hoping to get another shot at the NCAA Championships and break a few school records down the line.

“I wanted to go to nationals really bad, and I knew I was working hard enough to get there; I just needed to put the right race together,” he said. “It was definitely a great experience that I want to experience again.”

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