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Written by Rod O’Donnell on 23 May 2019.

Numbers don’t lie. This month we will look at a variety of facts. The reader will find information that will form a pattern of where we are today and were yesterday in the world of sports. Some numbers will inspire, while others will depress, and many will reflect the direction in which our sport is going in terms of prominence.

51,389 – Boys and girls participating in high school track and field in Ohio

1,088,689 – Boys and girls participating in high school track and field in the United States

782 – Schools that sponsor outdoor track in Ohio

5,000 – Estimated number of athletes who participate on a typical weekend in indoor track in Ohio

24 – Indoor tracks in Ohio, that are used for competition

3 – Divisions in track and field in Ohio (population: 11.69 million)

4 – Divisions in track and field in Vermont (population: 626,299)

8 – Divisions in track and field in Mississippi – (population: 2.987 million)

109,405 – Attendance at the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championship – (2019)

4,000 – Capacity of the facility used for the NCAA Division I Indoor Track Championship

153,000 – Attendance at the 1962 2-day Russian/U.S. Dual Track Meet – held at Stanford Stadium

$139,853,341 – Combined revenue at West Virginia University and Marshall University, the only two NCAA Division I schools in the Mountain State

0 – The number of Division I men’s track programs in West Virginia

3 – States that do not sponsor Division I men’s track programs (West Virginia, Hawaii, Alaska)

17 – Days permitted for practice before the first outdoor high school track meet in West Virginia

12.6 – Maximum number of men’s scholarships that can be used over a four-year period for NCAA Division I track and field and cross-country

21 – Events conducted at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships

 163 – Size of the University of Nebraska’s football roster for 2019 (Watch for an unbelievable quote from University of Nebraska’s athletic department members in a future “Keeping Track” article.)

30-35 – The roster limit placed on many Division I men’s track and field teams

2.56 – The percentage of high school football players who participate on the Division I level

.09% - High school football players who are eventually drafted by the NFL

22 – 2018 First round draft choices (32) who participated in track and field in high school

43% - Of the Super Bowl Champion New England Patriots were track athletes in high school. 92.5 participated in multiple sports.

50.9% - Of the Atlanta Falcons were track athletes in high school

60% - Of specialized athletes suffer more lower- extremity injuries

71% - Of Division I football players were multi-sport athletes in high school

4 –Number of track meets televised on CBS, NBC, ABC, ESPN in April/May/June 2019

102 – Collegiate track meets held on the weekend of April 13, 2019

4 – Members of the USA Track and Field team at the 2016 Olympics were from Ohio

16 – States not represented on the USA Olympic Team

16 – Members of the USA Team from California

9/8 – Teams from the SEC in the Top 20 at the 2018 men’s and women’s NCAA Outdoor Championships

These facts were gathered from a variety of reliable sources. Informed track followers need to understand the direction of our great sport and need to do all that is possible to promote and protect it.

Yours in track,

Rod O’Donnell


Read more of Rod O'Donnell's Keeping Track articles on -

Keeping Track - The Aspen Institute -

Keeping Track – Goals -

Let Your Mind Run, A Memoir of Thinking My Way to Victory -


Life Lessons from Cross Country -

 Bring Back the Mile -   

Preparing for the upcoming Track Season -

KEEPING TRACK - Team State Championship -

Keeping Track -  CROSS COUNTRY -

Keeping Track - Number 7 -

Attending a Running Camp -

Can we do anything else to alienate sports fans -

Keeping Track - National Governing Body for High School Sports (NFHS)  -

 Keeping Track - Cross Country -

Keeping Track - Frank Shorter -

KEEPING TRACK, Two Iconic Coaches-

KEEPING TRACK -  Caldwell Story -

KEEPING TRACK - Furman Elite Training Group -

Keeping Track - 2 Divisions for 120 Lacrosse teams?

Boy's Division II and Division III -

Boy's Division I -;utm_campaign=july+2015+news&utm_medium=email


KEEPING TRACK - Football and Track Athletes -

 The Ohio High School Athletic Association State Cross-Country Championships -

Cross Country -

 Track Faces Challenges that could have adverse effects thus causing severe damage -

Marketing Track & Field -

Student Athlete’s Questions -

The Need to Speak Up -

A new book by John McDonnell -

KEEPING TRACK - From September-October 2013 print RUNOHIO -

Random Thoughts -

Another Division I institution has dropped its men’s track program -

 Ohio University Athletic Department's Worst Decision -

Ten Pledges for Cross Country Coaches -

London Olympics -

 Improving as a Coach –

You Only Go Around Once -

Dear Jesse Owens –

West Virginia State Cross Country Championship –

SPIRE Institute -

Why is the OHSAA Treating Cross Country Different than All of the Other Sponsored Sports?

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