6 Boys return with 55m Dash PRs under 6.5 seconds in a North Carolina sprint scene that's looking for a new star. Last year J Johnson was dominant in the sprints in the state and 4 of the states top 5 athletes from 2017 have graduated. Below we review the states top returners and each classifications state title contenders.
Top returner Brandon Ray has transferred from Athens Drive to Village Christian Academy. Though the school is in the NCISAA that doesn't compete in indoor track, the sprint star is still planning on having an indoor track season competing unattached. Ray is the top returner in the state at 6.36 and was 2nd to Johnson at the NCHSAA 4A Indoor State Championships last year.
Watch Brandon Ray run 6.36 at the Eastern High School Challenge
Cameron Council (Northwood) and Nadir Thompson (Southern Nash) ran 6.44 and 6.46 last indoor season at the NCHSAA 3A State Championships and should be battling to be the top boys in the state this fall. Council was a star on the outdoor track showing his fantastic range from 55 meters to 400 meters clocking 10.53, 20.98 and 48.39 last spring. Thompson looks to have been injured in his outdoor season after racing a few times early on, then not racing past early April.
Watch Cameron Council and Nadir Thompson go 2-3 at the NCHSAA 3A Indoor State Championships
Van Gupton (Rolesville) posted a 6.41 last year at the Eastern High School Challenge, but failed to make the finals at the Indoor State Championship taking 9th in the prelims. Gupton is a baseball player first, so we don't see him much on the outdoor track, though he did run 10.67 at the Wake County Championships for the 100m dash. He'll be a wildcard to see if he shifts his focus onto indoor track or is locked into gearing up for his final baseball season.
Josh Polk (Hobbton) was dominant at the 1A level last outdoor season, but despite having a strong indoor season, he's still missing that indoor 55m dash title. He was 2nd last year to Cameron Barnhill (North Brunswick). Polk holds a PR of 6.48 indoors and ran 10.70 and 21.74 last year outdoors winning the 1A State Championship in both the 100 & 200.
Rondell (RJ) Terry (Garner) emerged as a star last year outdoors running 10.60 and 21.57 for the 100 & 200m dash. He holds an indoor PR of 6.52 and is the 7th fastest returner in NC. I think Terry certainly could be a star that emerges this indoor season as he hopes to lead Garner to an overall team title.
Kobe Barnes (Wakefield) came on strong at the end of the track season last fall taking 2nd to Brandon Ray in the 100m Dash at the outdoor state championships. We didn't see Barnes at the state meet last fall, but he holds a PR of 6.61 for the 66m dash and he should certainly be able to improve on this this fall. Barnes holds outdoor PRs of 10.64 and 21.51.
NCHSAA 4A State Title Contenders (Returning Rankings)
- James Maye (Rocky River)
- Rondell Terry (Garner)
- Van Gupton (Rolesville)
- Ahmad Ellis (Berry Academy)
- Kobe Barnes (Wakefield)
- Jaylen Coleman (Porter Ridge)
- Khafre Brown (West Mecklenburg) - Football star, might not see indoors, injured last year
- Daniel (DJ) Moyer (Reagan)
NCHSAA 3A State Title Contenders (Returning Rankings)
- Cameron Council (Northwood)
- Nadir Thompson (Southern Nash)
- Kamarion Graham (Charles B. Aycock)
- Savien Hayes (Parkland)
- Rashaed Whittington (Jacksonville)
- Edward Anthony (White Oak)
- Christian Daniels (Western Alamance)