Canceled track meets raise questions

Pache’ Caldwell placed first in the high jump at the season opener. Photo courtesy of famu athletics

The track and field season is in full swing, but is it for the Florida A&M University program?

Florida A&M students are eager to cheer on the track team for the 2021-2022 season but some are unsure about the outlook on the season due to yet another meet being canceled.

Dec. 3 was the indoor season opener for the FAMU men’s and women’s track and field teams. The Rattlers performed well and had two male participants finish first in two

different events against Clemson University. Since then, the team has been scheduled to meet January 8, 10 and 21, but all were canceled.

It has been over a month since these Rattler runners have competed and fans are questioning when they are going to see these athletes compete again this season.

Jillian Henderson, senior psychology student, was looking forward to the 2021-2022 season but now is discouraged due to all of the cancellations.

“I love supporting FAMU sports teams and was anticipating a successful Track and Field season after watching their season opener. The cancellations are upsetting, but I hope everything is okay.”

Last season there were a few meets canceled due to coronavirus according to the FAMU athletics website. The rise of Omicron cases in Florida could be the reason for the delayed season.

Zoe Hightower, FAMU women’s track and field athlete, said that there are a number of factors that are causing the cancellations but COVID-19 is one of the biggest.

“There have been positive COVID-19 tests which do not allow us to compete, there is also a lot going on with admin and coaching. These are things we can not control, however; all these setbacks are just preparing us to be better for the next meet,” Hightower said.

FAMU track and field met with Clemson University on Jan. 28. The team has been consistently practicing and are coming harder than the first time.

Pache Caldwell, FAMU men’s track and field athlete, who placed first in the high jump at the season opener said he is confident in himself and his team.

“We have been going through a lot of hardship with all of the canceled meets however I know that all of the trial and error has prepared us for our upcoming meet.”

The Rattlers will be traveling to South Carolina to face the Tigers once again. Does FAMU still have what it takes to place first?

For information on how to watch FAMU men’s and women’s track and field meets visit: