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Meet Multi-Talented Kyle Garland – Track & Field News

Meet Multi-Talented Kyle Garland - Track & Field News

A 13.71 hurdler outdoors, Garland PRed at 7.74 over the 60H en route to his Collegiate Record heptathlon score at the NCAA. (KIRBY LEE/IMAGE OF SPORT)

LAST YEAR Kyle Garland took 2nd in the NCAA heptathlon, losing by just 11 points. This time around, he won with the No. 2 performance in history, shattering the Collegiate Record and missing Ashton Eaton’s WR by a mere 6 points.

Not surprisingly, the days since he got home are a little different this time around. “Oh my gosh, the past 48 hours, I’ve gained almost 1500 new followers on Instagram,” he says. “I finally got verified on Instagram as well, and my phone has not stopped blowing up.”

Now the multi-event CR holder indoors and out, the Georgia senior is riding a nice wave. “I feel absolutely incredible about the work that I put in last weekend,” he says. “It’s been a super-, super-long process, but just a super trusting process and super-super encouraging as well.

“Coach [Bulldog assistant James Thomas] and I kind of had a big plan, big goals after last season. We just went to work in the offseason, starting in August, assessed where we could get better, assessed where we thought we tapped out and we realized there was no area after last season that we had tapped out. We just were super excited about the potential that this season could hold and it’s really started to pay off.

“Just to be in a position to break Ashton Eaton’s Collegiate Record, you know, was a very huge feat. And then to see the number pop up 6 points from tying the World Record. I was just kind of like, ‘Man, this is next level, you know?’ All along I knew I was capable of doing something like that, but to see it up on that board, it’s like, ‘This is real, man, this is real.’”

Going in, Garland knew he was ready, but had been thinking of a score in the mid-6500s. “I definitely saw that 6499 record going down. I was confident I could break that number after seeing what I put up in my first competition at Texas Tech (6415). But you know, it’s always good to kind of shock yourself when it comes down to it.”

Avenging ’22’s loss was a big motivator, he says. “Last year I knew it came down to the 1K and I knew it was going to be the same case this year. Last year I lost by 11 points because I needed to run 1 second faster and I just pulled up short. I used that to never get complacent throughout the season, knowing that I had to stay diligent on my longer distance running to be…

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