Q&A: Junior hurdler confident going into conference championship
Junior hurdler Amere Lattin swept the American Athletic Conference hurdling titles, winning the indoor 60m, outdoor 110m and outdoor 400m. At the Tyson Invitational on Feb. 9 , he ran a season-best 7.79s, a time which moved him into a tie for No. 15 in the country.
With the team traveling to the indoor conference championship Friday, The Cougar took time to speak with Lattin as the men’s track & field team prepares to compete for their fourth straight indoor conference title.
The Cougar: What’s the mentality of the team heading into the conference championship?
Amere Lattin: A championship vibe. Pretty much: We’ve done this before, we’re going to come and act like we’ve done it before. Come out with the best mentality.
TC: How have the incoming freshmen like Quivell Jordan helped you in practice?
Lattin: Since these freshmen came in August, they all came ready to work, they all came in ready to grind. Outside of my class, the 2015 class, these freshmen have done nothing but tremendous things and they all stepped up the way they need to.
TC: You ran a season-best 7.79s in the 60m hurdles at your most recent meet. Is it a motivational booster knowing you’ve jumped back into the NCAA Top 16?
Lattin: It’s good that I can shake off the cobwebs. I’m able to progress and I see myself progressing. The time is dropping down each and every week, along with the 4×4 and the hurdles. So I know as my 400s get better my hurdles get better. We just grind as a team altogether, and it’s helping me grow knowing that the team is growing.
TC: What has it been like seeing the success the 4x400m relay team has had this season?
Lattin: Great. I’ve seen this team struggle, I’ve seen us work as hard as possible and I’ve seen our 4×4 increase every year. We’ve been working on this since I got to the University. Our 4×1 is together, now it’s time to put our 4×4 together and now it’s time to build this championship team that we all speak of.
TC: Is there a difference between this year’s team and last year’s championship team?
Lattin: Yeah, there is. We have a championship vibe now. It’s been there, but now it’s more than ever. We have a chip on our shoulder. Everyone’s out to get us.
TC: Do you feel pressure when you run the hurdles to try and improve your national qualifying mark?
Lattin: Not at all. At this point I’m taking it day by day and I run my races. I’ll run my races and do what I have to do to get to nationals. So no pressure.
TC: What should we expect to see from the team come the conference meet next week?
Lattin: Your 2018 conference champions, indoor.