By Nathaniel Lastrapes |Staff Writer|
Women’s track and field is coming to CSUSB and the team is excited to begin it’s inaugural season on Saturday, Feb. 28 at the Rossi Relays in Claremont.
The track and field program is still in it’s early stages and head coach Tom Burlesom is in the progress of building a team, as this is going to be their first season competing in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA).
The track and field program has replaced CSUSB’s women’s Water Polo program, for budget purposes, which has been in CSUSB’s intercollegiate program since 1999.
Associate Athletics Director Mark Reinhiller said that the addition of a women’s track and field team “allows a large number of women to compete because of the nature of the sport.”
Reinhiller also mentioned that it is important for our intercollegiate athletics programs reflects the campus six-to-four female-to-male ratio.
For every four males at CSUSB, there are six females, so it is logical for Coyote Athletics to represent the male to female ratio.
There are currently four men’s sports: basketball, baseball, golf, and soccer. With the addition of track and field there are now six women’s sports: basketball, cross country, soccer, softball, volleyball, and now track and field.
The team currently consists of walk-ons and transfers, but is also open for athletes from other sports to walk on and participate in the newly established program.
Over 40 Coyote women have joined. A lot of the cross country girls have joined the track and field team during their offseason to participate in the long distance events.
Among the participants on the new team are soccer and volleyball players from CSUSB, who, by virtue of the inaugural track and field program, will obtain a freshman status. This means that any student who participates in track and field can do so for four years.
The addition of the track and field program is also consistent with the popularity of the sport throughout the Inland Empire.
There are a multitude of young women in the Inland Empire who excel in track and field, so now that CSUSB offers the sport it will hopefully attract more student athletes to come participate in the program.
It is still unclear what events the women will participate in because the team is still in it’s early stages, but CSUSB is expected to be competitive from the beginning.
The addition of the track and field program allows for consistency throughout the CSUSB Athletics Program, which has been a goal for the university for a long time. Every sport offered on campus is eligible to compete in the CCAA and compete for state championships.
This also implies that any track and field athlete who qualifies for the National Collegiate Athletic Association has the opportunity to compete for national titles for CSUSB.
The possibilities are endless when CSUSB can get recognition through the NCAA, so this is a very exciting time for the athletics department with the addition of track and field.