GREENSBORO – The North Carolina A&T track and field team released the 2013-14 indoor and outdoor schedules on Thursday. The indoor schedule includes four meets in nearby Winston-Salem, N.C., while the outdoor schedule includes two home meets at Irwin Belk Track and the MEAC Outdoor Championships to be hosted at Irwin Belk Track.
The Aggies first indoor meet is scheduled for Dec. 7 at the JDL Fast Track Indoor facility in Winston-Salem, N.C. The team returns to Winston-Salem the following weekend for the Wake Forest Invitational. After having back-to-back meets in Winston-Salem, the team will travel to Chapel Hill for the Dick Taylor Invitational on Jan. 17 and the Dennis Craddock Open on Jan. 18.
The indoor season will also include trips to Penn State and New York before the Aggies travel to Landover, Md., for the MEAC Indoor Championships Feb. 13-15. The Aggies hope to then advance many athletes to the NCAA Indoor Championships in Albuquerque, N.M., March 14-15.
“The earlier meets closer to home will give us a chance to see our younger athletes perform,” says Duane Ross, the Aggies director of track and field programs. “They can work on some things to get better meet by meet before the real heat starts.”
The outdoor season begins March 20 at the 49er Classic hosted by Charlotte University. The meet concludes on March 22 before the Aggies travel to the University of Texas (March 26-29), the University of Florida (April 4-5) and Philadelphia for the prestigious Penn Relays (April 24-26).
A&T’s two home meets in 2014 are the Aggie Invitational on April 12 and the Aggie Last Chance on May 11. The Aggies will also complete close to home during the outdoor season with meets at N.C. State (March 27) and Duke University (April 4-5). For the sixth straight year, A&T will host the MEAC Outdoor Championships at Irwin Belk Track. The first day of the conference championships is May 1 and will conclude May 3. Four weeks later, the Aggies will send qualified athletes to Jacksonville, Fla., for the NCAA Division I East Preliminary Round May 29-31.
“We’re competing in some very competitive meets early during outdoor,” said Ross. “By the time we get to the MEAC meet, the freshmen will have learned the ropes as far as competition, and our upperclassmen will be ready to win some championships. I said this since I’ve gotten here, ‘Our goal is to be the best school in the country, not just the best HBCU.’”