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Stan Becton | NCAA.com | April 20, 2022

Arkansas, Kentucky and BYU rise, seven teams drop out in latest women's track and field rankings

2022 midseason superlatives for women's outdoor track and field

Week 2 of the women's outdoor track and field rankings saw 16 teams fall, with seven teams dropping out completely. However, two teams made their debut in the rankings, landing in the top-10.

Here are takeaways from the national rating index from the USTFCCCA.

Arkansas jumps into the top 5

No. 5 Arkansas jumped from tenth to fifth in this week's rankings. After landing top-5 marks in sprints in Week 1, the Razorbacks added top-5 marks in distance events at the Stanford Invitational. Lauren Gregory now has the national lead in the 10,000 meters and Krissy Gear has the fifth-fastest 1500 meter time.

🐊: 7 numbers to know from the Florida Relays

Kentucky and BYU debut in the top-10

After not being ranked to open the season, No. 6 Kentucky and No. 10 BYU made their presence known in Week 2 with top-10 debuts. 

Kentucky competed at Florida Relays last weekend, winning three events and finishing second in two others. Bowerman candidate Abby Steiner won the 100 meters with a personal-best time of 11.10 seconds, the fastest non-wind assisted time in the NCAA this season. Alexis Holmes won the 400 meters with a personal-best time of 51.94. The tandem also helped the Wildcats win the 4x400 meter relay in 3:26.99.

BYU competed at both the Stanford Invitational and the UVU Invitational last weekend. Bowerman candidate Courtney Wayment ran a personal best time of 4:12.81 in the 1500 meters; she now has the second-fastest time in the NCAA this season. Wayment was one of four top-10 NCAA marks the Cougars recorded at the Stanford Invitational. At the UVU Invitational, BYU won first place in seven out of eight possible events.

WATCH: Texas and Texas A&M set top-4 NCAA times in blazing 400-meter race

Five more teams make their first appearance in the rankings

Joining Kentucky and BYU with a first appearance in the 2022 rankings are No. 19 New Mexico, No. 22 Stanford, No. 23 Iowa, No. 24 Colorado and No. 25 Houston.  

New Mexico competed in both the Stanford Invitational and Texas Tech Masked Rider last weekend. Stanford hosted the aforementioned invitational, which also hosted Colorado.

Meanwhile, Houston hosted its own invitational, while Iowa competed at Florida Relays. 

All programs had impressive weeks with many athletes setting personal bests, highlighted by Colorado's Abby Nichols' NCAA-leading 15:27.11 in the 5000 meters.

BIG NAMES: 40 names you should know before the 2022 women’s outdoor track season

Seven teams fall from the rankings

The following teams dropped from Week 2's rankings:

  • Minnesota (15)
  • Virginia (16)
  • Arizona (18)
  • Ole Miss (19)
  • Michigan State (21)
  • Miami (FL) (23)
  • Washington (25)

Could the first national ratings index have been a bit too high on a few of these programs? Maybe, but the drop could also come from more teams and top competitors beginning their seasons.

🔮: How the first USTFCCCA rankings predict the women's champion

California and North Carolina A&T are the biggest risers

In a week that saw nine teams fall in the rankings, No. 15 California and No. 17 North Carolina A&T were the biggest risers, moving up five and seven spots, respectively.

California competed at the Stanford Invitational last weekend. Bowerman candidate Camryn Rogers set a facility and meet record in the hammer throw, joined by teammate Anna Purchase in second. On the track, Ezinne Abba won the 100 and 200 meters and teammate Maisie Stevens finished second. The duo also helped Cal win the 4x100 meter relay. The Golden Bears are looking like one of the most well-rounded teams in the country entering April.

North Carolina A&T is powered by its undefeated relay teams. After winning the 4x100 and 4x400 meter relays at Raleigh Relays last week, the Aggies followed by sweeping the events at Florida Relays. In the 4x100, North Carolina A&T cut nearly two seconds off its time. The Aggies are building momentum as they look to climb back to the top-5 where they finished last year.

💍: 5 track and field programs that could be the next first-time national champion

See the full rankings from April 4, 2022:

Ranking Team Points Previous
1 Texas 475.75 1
2 Texas A&M 337.85 4
3 Florida 330.5 5
4 Texas Tech 256.01 2
5 Arkansas 237.82 10
6 Kentucky 190.72 NR
7 Baylor 181.07 11
8 Oregon 180.76 7
9 LSU 169.33 3
10 BYU 154 NR
11 Southern California 127.51 9
12 Duke 120.95 12
13 NC State 118.94 6
14 South Carolina 118.12 13
15 California 116.12 20
16 Ohio State 110.59 8
17 North Carolina A&T 108.9 24
18 Oklahoma 100.02 14
19 New Mexico 99.55 NR
20 Auburn 92.28 17
21 Villanova 86.86 22
22 Stanford 82.88 NR
23 Iowa 70.58 NR
24 Colorado 67.88 NR
25 Houston 66.5 NR

Dropped out (previous): Minnesota (15),  Virginia (16), Arizona (18), Ole Miss (19), Michigan State (21), Miami (FL) (23), Washington (25)

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