EUGENE, Ore. ? What has already been a great spring for Erica Bougard could get even better this week.
In March, the sophomore All-American from Byhalia, Miss., won a national indoor title in the pentathlon. On Monday, she was tabbed the USTFCCCA South Regional Woman's Field Athlete of the Year. Starting Wednesday, she and the rest of her teammates will be vying for more titles at the 2013 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships at historic Hayward Field.
Bougard will be competing in a team-best three events, starting with the long jump at 2:15 p.m. CT on Wednesday. She also qualified for the heptathlon and 4x400.
In all, the men's and women's teams will have 13 student-athletes competing in 10 events. The championships are scheduled to conclude Saturday night.
"It doesn't get any bigger than this," MSU coach Steve Dudley said. "This is the stage every one of these kids strive for. It's what they have worked so hard for all year long."
Also competing in multiple events are Jody-Ann Muir (400m and 4x400) and Olympian Duandre Barnaby (400m and 4x400). Two weeks ago at the preliminary round in Greensboro, N.C., the women's 4x400 relay team of Muir, Bougard, Ocian Archer and Ste'yce McNeil set the school record with a time of 3:34.29.
"This time of the year, you hope to be peaking," said Dudley, whose men's team is currently ranked No. 23. "Everyone knows what's at stake."