Ninety nine times out of one hundred, a mile race featuring Oregon alums and Olympians Galen Rupp (left/photo by Paul Merca) and Matthew Centrowitz wouldn't be such a big deal to track and field fans in this part of the country, as after all, both have made regular appearances at the Dempsey Indoor facility as undergrads and post collegians.
But we're talking London Olympic 10000 meter silver medalist Galen Rupp and 2011 Daegu world championship 1500 meter bronze medalist Matthew Centrowitz!
Rupp and Centrowitz are the centerpiece of Saturday's University of Washington's Preview Meet at the Dempsey Indoor super speedway with its fast 307 meter Mondo surface. The men's mile is tentatively scheduled to get underway at noon.
They'll be joined by Nike Oregon Project teammate and former NCAA champ Dorian Ulrey, along with Tacoma resident and US Olympic Trials 800 finalist Mark Wieczorek.
The field will be paced by Tacoma resident and rabbit du jour Matt Scherer, who according to a post on Flotrack, is supposed to take the field through 800 meters in 1:55, a pace that would easily break the current facility record of 3:54.52, set by Chris Solinsky at the 2011 Husky Classic.
Another Olympian and Nike Oregon Project runner, Dathan Ritzenhein, was entered in the men's 3000, but Flotrack reports that he's scratched.
Other intriguing matchups include Trenier Moser and Tara Erdmann of the Nike Oregon Project in the women's 3000, with a pair of nationally ranked high schoolers in New Yorker Mary Cain (who is now coached by NOP coach Alberto Salazar) and Husky commit Katie Knight from Spokane in the field; Olympic Trials finalist and NCAA outdoor scorer Logan Miller of the UW against NCAA indoor pole vault scorer Keisa Monterola from Eastern Washington; a matchup in the men's pole vault featuring Olympic Trials third place finisher and UW alum Scott Roth versus Pac-12 champ JJ Julifs of the Huskies, former NCAA D2 champ Ryan Brown from Western Washington; former Pac-10 champ and UW alum Ryan Vu; and Husky newcomers Chris Williams and Jax Thoirs.
Williams, a highly touted freshman from Pennsylvania, is also entered in the 60 meter hurdles.
Another freshman to watch for the Huskies Saturday is Daje Pugh in the hurdles, who is one of Washington's top incoming recruits, after winning the California state meet in the 300 hurdles. She's entered in the 60 hurdles.
Saturday's meet will be the season opener for many of the state's Division I and II schools, with entries from schools and clubs from Oregon, British Columbia as well as California and Hawaii.
The meet gets underway at 8 am, and lasts until approximately 6 pm.