Prior to last night, when the track & field aficionado thought of great NCAA Division ll intermediate hurdlers, they visualized a certain cat from Moorehouse named Edwin…as in Moses.
Enter Trevor Bassitt, a Dll-er out of Ashland University in the Buckeye State of Ohio. The pre-race pundits had him pegged for somewhere between 7th and 8th place, but au contraire.
The heretofore unsponsored and self-coached timber-topper managed just seventh place at last year’s Olympic Trials on this very Hayward Field oval. Afterward, perhaps taking a sage page from the book of philosopher Goethe who intimated that “boldness has genius, power, and magic in it,” Bassitt proclaimed that, “I will never miss another USA Team. Mark it down.”
Last night while racing out in the loneliness of lane 8, Bassitt blazed the oval’s outermost perimeter in brilliant fashion. That being said, with fully 300 meters behind him, the lanky Ohioan was in but 6th place. And that is precisely when the afterburners kicked in.
Methodically mowing down the field one by one, Trevor Bassitt finished what he had started precisely 47.39 seconds earlier.
But wait, was he fourth or was he third? Breathlessly, and for what seemed like an eternity, he stared at the jumbotron of a scoreboard.
Finally, it read 1. Dos Santos Brazil 46.29. Ten seconds later, up popped
2. Benjamin USA 46.89. It was then that time stopped. One Mississippi, two Mississippi…fifteen Mississippi.
3. Bassitt USA 47.39, at which point the partisan crowd erupted in fervorous elation while Bassitt and Benjamin celebrated in an embrace for the ages.
Shortly afterward, a jubilant Bassitt recollected, “I knew it was close. When I finally saw my name pop up, it was just unbelievable.”
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