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Oregon men smash NCAA mile record, grab top two spots in collegiate history

Teammates Cooper Teare and Cole Hocker ran to first and second in the NCAA all-time mile rankings

Photo by: Instagram/cooperteare

The University of Oregon men dominated in the mile at the Tyson Invitational in Fayetteville, Ark., on Friday, with two runners beating the NCAA record in the event. Cooper Teare took the win in 3:50.39, finishing just ahead of teammate Cole Hocker, who crossed the line in 3:50.55. Both men beat Edward Cheserek‘s 2017 collegiate mile record of 3:52.01, and they now sit at first and second all-time in the NCAA ranks. Third place went to Oregon’s Charlie Hunter, who ran the sixth-fastest time in collegiate history at 3:53.49. 

Teare, a senior at Oregon, shattered his previous indoor mile PB, which stood at 3:55.50 heading into Friday’s race. Hocker is a sophomore, and he also smashed his previous best, shaving a just under eight seconds off his PB of 3:58.20. Both men ran their previous PBs at the same meet in Boston in 2020. Not only did they successfully top the NCAA all-time list, but Teare and Hocker are now the seventh- and eighth-fastest indoor milers in world history, sitting just ahead of Olympic medallists Matt Centrowitz and Galen Rupp, both of whom also ran for Oregon. 

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While Hunter (a junior who moved from Australia to the U.S. to compete collegiately) is a bit farther down the NCAA ranks than his two teammates, he has still had a great season. Coming into 2021, his mile PB was 3:55.41 (a time he ran at the same Boston meet where Teare and Hocker ran their previous PBs).

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On January 30, at the same track in Arkansas where his team ran on Friday, Hunter set the Australian indoor mile record, running 3:54.54. He bettered that record on Friday, just two weeks after setting it the first time, and it now sits at 3:53.49. (Hunter also raced on Saturday, and he set the Australian indoor 800m record, posting a time of 1:45.59.) 

In addition to their mile times, splits were recorded at the 1,500m mark. None of the three men hit the Olympic 1,500m qualifying time of 3:35.00 on Friday, but Teare and Hocker (both of whom are American) did run under the U.S. Olympic Team Trials standard of 3:37.50. The pair can now compete at the trials, which will be held later this year in June on their home track at the University of Oregon in Eugene. 

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