March 12, 2009
Getting out of snowy Pullman is not the only reason Trent Arrivey is excited to head to the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships in College Station, Texas this weekend. Arrivey, an All-American high jumper in 2008, wants to redeem himself at the indoor championships and prove why he is currently ranked second in the nation in the high jump.
Last year, Arrivey cleared 7-1 1/2 at the WSU Open II, but did not clear the bar at the NCAA Indoor Championships. This year will be different.
"Last year, I squeaked in at the end and didn't have a lot of confidence going in. This year I'm sitting tied for second and feeling pretty good about my chance to contend," said Arrivey, "Second place is prime position. When you're in first place people expect you to win, but being second I can go in there, have fun and high jump like I know how."
Arrivey has already set a personal record this indoor season, clearing 7-3 to place second at the MPSF Indoor Championships in Seattle. Last year, Arrivey placed ninth at the NCAA Outdoor Championships and earned All-America status.
The trip to College Station will be special for another reason for Arrivey. His mother, Kelli, a former high jumper at the University of Southern California, and his younger brother will be there. Arrivey is hoping his mom brings him luck again, as she saw his championship performance at NCAA West Regionals last year.
The Cougar team leaves on Thursday for Texas and Arrivey believes they are all ready to bring some medals back to Pullman. The group of competitors is small, but mighty. Along with Arrivey's second place national ranking, the men's 4x400m relay team is currently ranked fifth in the nation.
The trip will be fairly relaxed, kicking off spring break and coming after a hard week of classes.
"I had more tests than I knew what to do with this week," Arrivey said, "But they're all done, so now all that is left to do is high jump."
Once Saturday rolls around though, Arrivey will be all business. After a favorite breakfast of a blueberry bagel and light cream cheese, visualization and a possible Jamba Juice will have Arrivey ready to compete.
With the outdoor season beginning the week after indoor nationals, Arrivey and Coach Matt McGee have decided on a selective competition schedule. A regime of training and lifting will hopefully allow Arrivey to peak at the right times and against the best in the country.
ESPN360.com will have live webcasts of Arrivey, and the other Cougar competitors' events at the NCAA Indoor Championships. Don't forget to check back for Arrivey's blog about the championships right here at the home page of Cougar Athletics.