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Freshman Wyatt Rhoads clears the bar during the pole vault as part of the men's heptathalon at the Big 12 Indoor Championships held at the Lied Rec Center on Feb. 27. 

Wyatt Rhoads stands alone, eyes all around watching and waiting for something to happen. It’s his favorite event, but the pressure is on. He remembers that he needs to stay relaxed. He sticks his tongue out jokingly.

The men’s track and field team heads to a couple locations this weekend, and in Lincoln, Nebraska, you may catch Rhoads, a junior, doing these things right before he goes into his favorite event. That event—the pole vault.

“It’s always exciting, it’s always a little scary when you do it,” Rhoads said about the pole vault.

Rhoads has competed in one other heptathlon this year in which he earned his personal-best score of 4,761. This year he has also earned personal records in shot put, pole vault, 60-meter hurdles, 60-meter dash and long jump.

Rhoads will be competing this weekend at the Husker Invitational which will undoubtedly bring about some challenges.

Something that is not often discussed is the time commitment it takes to train for so many different events.

“It’s just all about spreading it out,” Rhoads said. “The other piece of it is just listening to my body.”

Rhoads has been able to overcome the roadblocks so far and looks to have another great weekend.

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Freshman Zach Black runs in the Distance Medley Race during the Big 12 Indoor Track & Field Championships. Iowa State finished third. 

Along with the challenges at the Husker Invitational this weekend, the Cyclones will also be sending a couple of runners to Boston for the Bruce Lehane Scarlet and White Invitational.

The Cyclones are sending sophomores Zach Black and Edwin Kurgat to run the 1,000-meter and the mile run, respectively. The latter came in second place last weekend by only .03 seconds in the 3,000-meter which marked his first run in the cardinal and gold of his collegiate career.

Kurgat transferred from the University of Tennessee at Martin and has already shown he can make an impact on an already strong core of middle-distance runners.

Kurgat will be looking to bounce back this week in Boston and improve upon his impressive debut.

Iowa State has its hands full again with a lot of talent coming out this weekend. The Cyclones need to be able to show improvement, and will need to build off of all the positives of last week.

Middle distance was the focus last week and the field events took the weekend off to get ready for this weekend. That means they should be well rested, and the Cyclones will look to balance their success more into other groups.

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Sophomore Jalen Ford won first place in the men's high jump during the Big 4 Duals on Jan. 23.

Someone who has not seen much action this year is senior jumper Jalen Ford. Ford is a very impressive high jumper and is listed to jump this week. That being said, there have been other events in which he was listed to jump and he either was pulled late, or only competed in the preliminary rounds. Ford is someone to keep an eye on, though.

Just one week out from the Iowa State Classic, held in Ames, the men’s track and field team will be trying to give fans something to be excited about as they gear up for the last few meets of the indoor season.

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