Iowa track and field to travel to Arkansas for Razorback Invitational

The Hawkeyes will compete against 11 other teams in Fayetteville, Arkansas, this weekend.


Jenna Galligan

Iowa sprinter Wayne Lawrence Jr. leads the pack in the 400m dash premier during the second day of the Larry Wieczorek Invitational on Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021 at the University of Iowa Recreation Building. Lawrence won with a time of 46.28. Due to coronavirus restrictions, the Hawkeyes could only host Big Ten teams. Iowa men took first, scoring 189, and women finished third with 104 among Minnesota, Wisconsin, Nebraska, and Illinois.

Grant Hall, Sports Reporter

The Iowa men’s and women’s track and field program will compete at the Razorback Invitational in Fayetteville, Arkansas, this weekend.

The meet, which starts Friday morning, is the first of two times the Hawkeyes will travel to Arkansas this indoor season. The University of Arkansas is hosting the meet at the Randal Tyson Indoor Track.

Twelve teams will compete at the Razorback Invitational: Iowa, Arkansas, Iowa State, Georgia, Mississippi State, Southern California, Oregon, Pittsburgh, Stanford, Oklahoma State, Missouri, and LSU.

The Iowa men’s track and field team is currently ranked No. 1 in the Midwest Region of the  United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association Poll. The Hawkeye men also came in at No. 9 in the country in the national U.S Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Poll — matching the highest ranking in program history to start the season.

Iowa women’s track and field holds the No. 2 ranking in the Midwest Region of the USTFCCCA Poll.

Iowa director of track and field Joey Woody said the meet will give the Hawkeyes national recognition.

“This is a terrific meet against some of the best competition in the nation,” Woody said. “We are a complete track and field program, and we are excited to showcase that this weekend.

“This meet is always one of the best meets in the country every season,” he added. “This is why I wanted to make sure we got back down to Arkansas to showcase our men’s and women’s programs.”

The Razorback Invitational will be the Hawkeyes’ first road trip of the indoor season. All three of Iowa’s meets prior to Friday have been held at the Iowa Recreation Building.

Iowa hosted its first meet of the season, the Jimmy Grant Invitational, on Dec. 11, and the Hawkeye Invitational on Jan. 14 and 15.

Most recently, Iowa men’s and women’s track and field participated in their final home meet of the 2021-22 season at the Larry Wieczorek Invitational.

Iowa swept its competition at the Wieczorek Invitational as the men accumulated 232 points and the women grabbed 183 points.

RELATED: Iowa track and field wins Larry Wieczorek Invitational

“It just shows the direction our program is going,” Woody said Saturday after the victory. “I thought our athletes performed at a really high level across the board.”

Now, Iowa’s multi-athletes will have the chance to showcase their talents at the Razorback Invitational. At their three home events, the Hawkeyes did not hold a heptathlon and pentathlon competition.

“This is the first time for our multi-athletes to compete in the heptathlon and pentathlon this season, and they’ll be doing so in one of the best fields in the country,” Woody said. “We are very excited to see what that group can do in a great competition.”

Woody also said junior sprinter Wayne Lawrence will return to the track at the Razorback Invitational. Lawrence did not compete in Iowa’s first three events for undisclosed reasons.

Lawrence is a four-time All-American and three-time Big Ten Indoor Champion in the 200 and 400-meter sprint.

“We’re excited to get Wayne back on the track this weekend,” Woody said. “He is one of the best long sprinters in the NCAA, so getting him back out there is big for our program.”