Former Wildcat Brigetta Barrett, a six-time NCAA Champion as a member of the women's track and field team, is a finalist for yet another prestigious award. Barrett, along with six other women, are finalists for the Jesse Owens Award. Established in 1981, The Jesse Owens Award is USA Track & Field's highest accolade, presented annually to the outstanding U.S. male and female track & field performers. This year's awards will be presented December 7 at the Jesse Owens Awards and Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, held in conjunction with USA Track & Field's 2013 Annual Meeting in Indianapolis.
Honoring the country's top male and female track and field athletes, the Jesse Owens winners are selected by a vote of the media in combination with online fan balloting, with media votes weighing 90 percent of the vote and fan voting 10 percent. Seven women and seven men are nominated. Online voting concludes at 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on Friday, Oct. 18.
Barrett closed out her collegiate career on a high note after sweeping both the indoor and outdoor NCAA Division I high jump titles for the third consecutive season. She is the most successful female high jumper in collegiate history. She also set the outdoor collegiate record and the all-time dual meet record in the event, all while going unbeaten against collegians in 10 event finals between the indoor and outdoor seasons. She cleared winning heights of 6-3¼ (1.91m) in seven of those finals, and five times took attempts at breaking the collegiate record — succeeding at the Pac-12 Championships with a clearance of 6-6¼ (1.99m).
Barrett was named the 2013 Pac-12 Women's Field Athlete of the Year for the first time in her career. She was also named the USTFCCCA National Women's Field Athlete of the Year this season, the first time she received that honor as well. She also was named the 2013 Women's West Region Field Athlete of the Year.
As a professional, Barrett won the 2013 USA Championship in the women's high jump with a personal-best clearance of 6-8.25 (2.04m). It was the best competition of her career by the height she cleared and with the amount of misses she had (only one, she ended with a clearance). Barrett's mark remained No. 1 in the world until the conclusion of the 2013 outdoor season. Her clearance of 6-8.25 was only 1/2 inch away from the American record set by Chaunte Lowe in Des Moines in 2010. That record is 6-8.75 (2.05m). Barrett's clearance is the second best in U.S. history.
At the 2013 IAAF World Championships, Barrett won the silver medal with a clearance of 6-6.75 (2.00m). That clearance is the highest a female high jumper from the U.S. has ever cleared at the World Championships. Over the course of the summer, Barrett competed in many Diamond League meets in Europe. She began at the Paris Diamond League Meeting on July 6 where she cleared 6-6 (1.98m) and took second place. On July 19, Barrett competed at the Monaco Diamond League Meeting and won with a jump of 6-7 (2.01m). After the IAAF World Championships, she jumped at the Stockholm Diamond League Meeting as well.
Barrett is also a finalist for The Bowerman, the highest honor given to the most outstanding male and female student-athletes in collegiate track & field. The winner of that award will be announced on December 18.
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