BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WCBI/Ole Miss Athletics) – Coming off a sensational performance at the SEC Outdoor Championships, Ole Miss senior sprinter Isiah Young was voted Southeastern Conference Men’s Runner of the Year by the league coaches on Friday.
Young earned the SEC Commissioner’s Trophy as the men’s high points scorer at the league championships in Columbia, Mo., after he defended his 200-meter title and was runner-up in the 100. He also helped the Rebel 4×100 meter relay team to a seventh-place result.
“This is a special award for a special guy,” said Rebel head coach Brian O’Neal. “He’s meant a lot for this program and he’s worked tremendously hard at his craft. He’s a great ambassador for Ole Miss. I’m really proud of him.”
“To be voted as the best runner in the SEC by the coaches is huge to me,” Young said. “I’m just trying to put myself high up so the next group of athletes that come to Ole Miss have a lot of work to do.”
A native of Junction City, Kan., Young is the first Ole Miss man to be named SEC Runner of the Year since Barnabas Kirui in 2010. It is the fourth time a Rebel male runner has earned the honor.
The 2012 London Olympian ran a sensational 20.20 to blow away the eight-man field and win his second straight 200-meter league title last Sunday. That time set a track record at Missouri’s Audrey J. Walton Stadium and is the best in the NCAA and United States this year and No. 3 in the world.
He nearly pulled off the sprint double with a narrow defeat in the 100 meters. He crossed the line in 10.14, just two-hundredths of a second behind winner Diondre Batson of Alabama (10.12).
Young currently leads the NCAA in the 200 and ranks second in the 100, while he anchors the Rebels’ 4×100 relay team that ranks 12th nationally.
The All-SEC and SEC All-Freshman teams were also announced on Friday.
In addition to Young earning first team All-SEC honors, sophomore Sam Kendricks received second-team distinction for his runner-up finish in the pole vault.
Racquel Moses nabbed SEC All-Freshman honors in the 100-meter hurdles. She was the top rookie, and placed 13th overall, in that event at the SEC Championships.
Other SEC Athlete of the Year awards went to LSU’s Damar Forbes (men’s field athlete), Florida’s Jimmy Clark (men’s freshman runner), Georgia’s Maicel Uibo (men’s freshman field athlete), Arkansas’ Nathanael Franks (men’s scholar-athlete), LSU’s Kimberlyn Duncan (women’s runner), Arkansas’ Makeba Alcide (women’s field athlete),Texas A&M’s Jennifer Madu (women’s freshman runner), Texas A&M’s LaQue Moen-Davis (women’s freshman field athlete) and Kentucky’s Chelsea Oswald (women’s scholar-athlete). Arkansas’ Chris Bucknam was named Men’s Coach of the Year, while the women’s honor went to Texas A&M’s Pat Henry.