DES MOINES, IA – Former South Carolina State track and field All-American and Bulldog record holder Tyrell Richard fell short in his bid to earn a spot on Team USA Track on Saturday, finishing eighth in the 400 meters at the 2019 USA Track and Field Outdoor Championships at Drake University.
The SCSU sprinter will be an alternate relay team member for the World Championship and will travel for “The Match,” which is a team USA vs team Europe event, prior to the Championship, according to Bulldog track coach Tim Langford.
Richard, running in lane eight, was clocked in a time of 45.07, well off his career best mark of 44.81. The Georgetown native never seemed to get in gear in the race, in which Fred Kerley (Texas A&M) upset favorite Michael Norman (Southern Cal) to take the championship in a time of 43.64 to Norman’s clocking of 43.79. Nathan Strother (Tennessee) grabbed third in a time of 44.29 to join Kerley and Norman in Doha, Qatar for the US in the World Championship in two months.
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Neither Richard or fellow All-American and Bulldogs teammate Demek Kemp, who owns the SC State 100-meter record and joined the former at the USATF Championship, finished in the top three in their event to earn an automatic qualifying to this year’s World Championship. However, they both made a great leap in their careers by making it to a stage that included some of the nation’s and world’s top athletes, according to Langford.
Langford will be leaving his position at SC State at the end of the month to join the staff at Oklahoma.
Richard and Kemp plan to continue their careers on the professional level.