March 12, 2013
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -
Derek Drouin is the 2013 National Indoor Field Athlete of the Year, the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association has announced. The Indiana high jumper wins the award for the second time in his career after winning the 2013 NCAA Indoor title in the high jump, his fourth national title in the event. Drouin is the first high jumper ever to win three NCAA indoor titles. The award is voted on by the nation's coaches. Drouin's national title led Indiana to a ninth-place finish at the meet, IU's fourth top-10 finish in as many years.
Indiana track and field director and head coach Ron Helmer said Drouin is the consummate teammate and competitor and is a great representative of IU track and field, IU athletics and the university as a whole
"When a story on NCAA.com recently described Derek as "Quietly Phenomenal", it could not have coined a more appropriate phrase," said Helmer. "He has proven himself over and over again to be both a phenomenal athlete and a phenomenal big meet competitor. He has done things few others in the sport have done and still quietly goes about the business of being Derek Drouin, committed team leader and committed teammate. We could not be more proud of the way he has represented our team, our university, his family and collegiate sports in general. He is the embodiment of everything that is good and right in college athletics and deserves every honor that comes his way."
Drouin became the first ever three-time NCAA indoor high jump champion, clearing 2.35m (7-8.5) to set a new Canadian indoor record and tie the all-time record for his home country. The jump is the second-best ever by a collegiate, is tied for third in the world during the 2013 indoor season, is the best on U.S. soil this year, is the best by a collegiate since 1990 and is just two centimeters off the collegiate record held by Hollis Conway. Drouin cleared seven bars in the competition, all on first attempts, and was 2.5 inches better than the field. Drouin got three attempts at 2.38m (7-9.75), which would have broken the collegiate record and taken the lead in the world this season.
He bettered London Olympic silver medalist Erik Kynard of Kansas State in the competition and broke Kynard's facility record at the Randal Tyson Track Center. Kynard took third at 2.29m (7-6). Mississippi State's Marcus Jackson was second, also clearing 2.29m. The field was one of the best in meet history, as the top seven all cleared 2.26m (7-5), which would have won the meet in 2012.
Drouin won his third title indoors and his fourth overall, becoming Indiana's second four-time NCAA champion, joining Bob Kennedy, who won two cross country titles, an indoor crown and an outdoor crown. Drouin added 10 points for the IU cause, and has now scored 56 points in his career at NCAA Championships, surpassing Jim Spivey for second-most in IU history. Drouin is now a four-time indoor All-American in the high jump and a six-time All-American in the event overall. He joins teammate Andy Bayer as the only four-time indoor All-Americans in a single event in the history of the IU program.
Indiana opens the outdoor season at the Alabama Relays on March 22-23. For complete coverage of all things IU track and field, stay tuned to IUHoosiers.com.