California Baptist University has announced the two latest additions to its intercollegiate athletics’ program–men’s and women’s distance track.
The Lancers will begin running only the distance events in the 2009-10 season, and current cross country coach Wade Watkins will oversee the program. The addition brings the number of sports offered by CBU to 22.
“Adding these sports provides a cost-effective complement to our cross country programs,” said CBU Vice President for Student Services and interim Athletic Director Kent Dacus. “It also gives an additional opportunity for those athletes to participate in both cross country and the distance events on the track.”
CBU will participate in both the indoor and outdoor seasons. The 2010 NAIA Indoor Track and Field Championships are March 4-6, while the outdoor championships are May 27-29.
During the indoor season, the Lancers will participate in the 600 meters, 800 meters, 1,000 meters, mile, 3,000 meters, 5,000 meters, 3,000-meter race walk, 4×800-meter relay and distance medley relay events. During the outdoor season, the Lancers will participate in the 400 meters, 800 meters, 1,500 meters, 5,000 meters, 10,000 meters, 5,000-meter race walk, 3,000-meter steeplechase, 4×800-meter relay, half marathon and marathon.
The Lancers previously sponsored track and field, dropping the program in 2002. CBU rose to national prominence in the late 1990s running in every NAIA Indoor and Outdoor National Championship from 1996-2002 on the men’s side. CBU finished fourth or better at the 1997, 1998, 1999 and 2001 indoor championships and garnered the university’s first-ever NAIA National Championship, winning the 1999 indoor title. The Lancers also finished in the top 10 in the 1997, 1998, 1999 and 2001 outdoor championships.
The women ran in three indoor and three outdoor championships, earning three Top 25 finishes.
CBU won two straight GSAC Men’s Track and Field titles in 1996-97 and is the only program other than Azusa Pacific or Point Loma Nazarene to win a GSAC men’s track title.