They call Eugene “Track Town USA” for a reason.
On Monday morning, USA Track & Field announced the final roster for the IAAF World Championships later this month in Beijing, China.
Matthew Centrowitz (1500m), Ashton Eaton (Decathlon), Phyllis Francis (400m, 4x400m relay), Jenna Prandini (200m, 4x100m relay), Galen Rupp (5000m and 10,000m), Jasmine Todd (100m, High Jump), Sam Crouser (Javelin) and English Gardner (100, 4x100m relay) will all represent Team USA on track & field’s biggest stage.
The eight current and former Ducks on the 2015 World Championships roster is a school-record. Close to 20 members on the Team USA roster have ties to Oregon.
Also worth noting is the controversial case of Nick Symmonds, who formerly ran at Western Oregon University and trained in Eugene with Oregon Track Club Elite before leaving Nike to sign with Brooks in Seattle. Symmonds, who is the best 800 meter runner in the country, was left off the team’s roster after refusing to sign the athlete agreement contract. In the contract, it stated athletes must wear team apparel (which is all Nike apparel, the uniform supplier of USATF) while representing Team USA. Symmonds refused to do this, essentially saying Brooks’ investment in Symmonds would be devalued if he had to wear Nike apparel.