Iowa track and field set to compete in two weekend events

The Hawkeyes will participate in both the Big Ten Texas Invitational and Big Ten Invitational No. 3 this weekend.


Jenna Galligan

Iowa multi-event competitor Will Daniels competes in the 4x400m relay during the fourth annual Larry Wieczorek Invitational at the University of Iowa Recreation Building on Saturday, Jan 18, 2020.

Lauren Swanson, Sports Reporter

The University of Iowa track and field team is splitting up this weekend. The Hawkeyes’ mid-distance and distance groups are traveling to Bloomington, Indiana, to compete in the third Big Ten Invitational of the 2021 outdoor season on Friday and Saturday, while the rest of Iowa’s squad heads to Prairie View, Texas, to participate in the Nebraska Cornhusker-hosted Big Ten Texas Invitational on Friday and Saturday.

Competition in Bloomington begins Friday at 5:20 p.m. with the women’s 800-meter, and action in Texas kicks off at 10 a.m. Friday with the women’s hammer throw.

The Hawkeye women enter the weekend ranked 27th in the nation per the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association’s Rating Index. The Iowa women also check in at No. 5 overall in the Midwest Region.

The Hawkeye men are ranked 25th in the nation and fifth in the Midwest Region, per the USTFCCCA. The University of Iowa is home to the Big Ten’s only nationally ranked men’s track and field team.

Senior Will Daniels, junior Peyton Haack, and sophomore Austin West will all make their decathlon debuts this weekend at the Big Ten Texas Invitational.

RELATED: Iowa track and field posts 10 career bests at Big Ten Invite #2

Perhaps the most potent runner of the bunch is Haack. The Westfield, Indiana, native placed 12th in the heptathlon at the NCAA Indoor Championships in March, earning second-team All-American honors.Haack also became Iowa’s first Big Ten heptathlon champion at the 2021 Big Ten Indoor Championships in Geneva, Ohio, Feb. 25-27, racking up a school-record 5,749 points.

Haack partly credits his success to his one-step-at-a-time approach to the heptathlon, noting that he doesn’t think of the heptathlon as one large event, but rather ten smaller events that contribute to a larger cumulative score.

“I just try to take it one event at a time,” Haack said. “It can get pretty overwhelming to think about all 10, so I really try to focus on the event at hand and put everything into that race or attempt. Every meet is an opportunity to improve, so that’s what I’m looking to do.”

Haack also noted importance of committed training, advising younger athletes to dedicate themselves to their training regimens, whatever they may be.

“Oh man it’s kind of crazy to be called an upperclassman,” Haack said. “I would say my biggest advice for incoming athletes is to take ownership of your training. Listen to your coaches and take their knowledge but pay attention to what you need and communicate with them. Stick to what works, but also be willing to try new things. Get to know your body and your training, learn what works and what doesn’t, and start to have open conversations with coaches.”

Daniels, Haack, and West kick off the two-day decathlon in Texas on Friday at noon with the 100-meter.

Competition in Bloomington concludes at 9 p.m. Saturday with the men’s 10,000-meter, and action in Texas wraps up at 6:30 p.m. Saturday with the men’s 4×400-meter relay.

Live coverage of the Big Ten Texas Invitational can be found on