PLANO – Toddrick Allen cleared a personal-best 7 feet in the
high jump March 21 at the
Texas Southern University Relays. Quite
a feat for someone still relatively new to the event.
"I used to play around with [high jumping] in the eighth
or ninth grade," said Allen, a Plano East
senior who said he
first jumped competitively two years ago. "I was getting 5-9
or so then."
Allen, the reigning 5A state champion, will enter the 45th
Jesuit-Sheaner Relays on Saturday as
the only jumper who has
cleared 7-0 in a meet this season.
Allen will be competing against several quality athletes from
around Texas, including Arlington Seguin's
Jared Colbert, who has
cleared 6-10 this season.
"I feel like I can jump against anybody in the
nation," Allen said. "It's just my determination.
don't let anybody scare me."
Tom Rapp, Allen's position coach at Plano East, isn't surprised
to see about Allen's confidence level.
"Toddrick's a special talent. There's no other way to say
it," Rapp said. "All I've done the last couple of
is work on a couple things for him to refine on. He just has
Allen, a Houston signee, said he participates in workouts twice
a day, once in the morning and again in
the afternoon. He said he
attempts about 15 jumps a day.
"Or I'll jump until I get a sense of accomplishment.
Whichever comes first," Allen said.
What makes Allen's accomplishments even more impressive is the
fact that he's not the tallest athlete.
In an event where he
competes against many who stand 6-3 or 6-4, Allen is 6-0.
Allen meshes athleticism and explosiveness with great
technique. That, along with Rapp's tutelage, has
helped him become
the state's elite high jumper. Rapp said Allen has the tools to
improve his personal best
another two or three inches,
"without any problems."
"I think the biggest thing will be his mental
approach," Rapp said.
Allen added: "I'll get 7-3. I'm almost there. I just have
to believe it and make it happen."
Saturday at Jesuit's Haggar Stadium
Events to watch
Shot put: Michael Carter threw a Jesuit-Sheaner Relays
record 70 feet, 0 ¼ -inch in 1979. Meet director
and founder Herb
Sheaner said this could be the year that record falls. Stephen
Saenz of Rio Grande City
has thrown 71-0 ¼ in indoor competition
this season. Whitesboro's Hayden Baillio also has a chance to
100 meters: All eyes will be on Rowlett's Marquise
Goodwin, SportsDay's 2008 Boys Athlete of the Year in
field. Goodwin medaled in five events and placed second in last
year's 100 at state. Goodwin will
have to fight off Justin
Northwest's Chris Bain and Plano East's Corey Bassett.
Pole vault: Midlothian's Vince Frawley, the state's top
vaulter, has cleared 16-11 this year. His twin brother,
No. 2 in the state at 16-5. The Frawleys will battle against
defending 4A champ Jared Parker of Vidor,
along with Smithson
Valley's Logan Cunningham and Landon Ferguson, who all have
cleared 16 feet. Joseph Caraway. who won Louisiana's indoor title
this season, is scheduled to compete.
Elite girls mile: Greenhill sophomore Chelsey Sveinsson
has been a record-setter since her freshman year. Sveinsson is the
favorite to win the 1,600, but Cedar Park Vista Ridge's Ashley
Isham – last year's
Jesuit-Sheaner Relays winner – and Amanda
Russell will make it tough.
Triple jump: Goodwin, the defending 5A champion, cleared
50-0 to win state last year. He and Trinity Christian-Cedar Hill's
Kenny Roseman will be the athletes to watch. Roseman, who has
jumped 49 feet in
practice, won the TAPPS 4A title last season.