AUSTIN, Texas — Two Texas Longhorns long jumpers have joined a list of UT student-athletes to punch their tickets to the Tokyo Olympics.
UT long jumpers Tara Davis and Steffin McCarter will compete for Team USA after earning Olympic bids at the U.S. Olympic Trials in Eugene, Oregon. Davis' historic performance, which featured back-to-back 23-foot jumps, made her the first Longhorn to earn a Team USA Olympic bid in the women's long jump.
"I can't put into words how I'm feeling right now, there just are so many emotions," Davis said. "I say it all the time, I didn't think I was going to be here. I was going through so much I just didn't ever think I was going to be at the Olympic Trials. But here I am, and I was so grateful for the opportunity, and I took advantage of it. Once I got into the finals, I was not going out, I was not going miss out on making the team. So here I am, and I'm an Olympian! I couldn't be happier!"
One day after Davis earned her spot on Team USA, fellow Longhorn track and field teammate, McCarter, snagged his spot on the Olympic team with a career-best leap of 27 feet, 1.25 inches to finish third in the trials.
"Being able to qualify with Tara is amazing," McCarter said. "Coach Flo really knows what he's doing, and it's kind of crazy because he'd tell us, 'Both of y'all are going to be Olympians,' and we're both sitting here looking at him like, 'OK, that's a very long time from now.' He wasn't saying this at the beginning of the week, he was saying it last year or years ago. For that to come true, he really knew how to prepare us and get us ready for this moment. He's amazing, I'm so grateful to have him as a coach, and I'm looking forward to having my training partner (Tara) over the next three, four weeks. It's amazing to have both of us make the team. I can't express how good that feels."
Six current or former Longhorns are headed to Tokyo for the XXXII Olympic Games, according to Texas Athletics. Four of them have qualified for Team USA, one with Jamaica and one with Barbados.
Current and former Longhorns track and field stars in the Tokyo Olympics are:
- Tara Davis – Team USA, long jump
- Steffin McCarter – Team USA, long jump
- Stacey Ann Williams – Team Jamaica, 4X400 relay team
- Jonathan Jones – Team Barbados, 400m dash
- Teahna Daniels – Team USA, 100m dash
- Ryan Crouser – Team USA, shot put
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