USC Track & Field Brings In "Elite Eight" Recruiting Class

    Nov. 22, 2016

    Women’s sprinters Lauren Rain Williams, Twanisha Terry and Kaelin Roberts, men’s sprinters Nicholas Moore and Zachary Shinnick, women’s hurdlers Chanel Brissett and Shante Robinson and women’s hammer thrower Joy McArthur make up the “elite eight” who have signed National Letters of Intent (NLIs) to compete in track and field at USC it was announced by Director of Track & Field Caryl Smith Gilbert today (Nov. 22). “So far our 2017 class is among the best in the United States,” said Smith Gilbert. “Our goal as a staff was to be diligent and thorough in identifying and connecting with extremely talented student-athletes that fit the USC academic and athletic mold.”

    “I truly appreciate the great job and all of the hard work my staff did for the early signing period,” added Smith Gilbert. “This class will definitely add to the highly competitive athletes we currently have on our team and will also fill some gaps in event areas that are thin or not previously covered.”

    Brissett, of Cheltenham High School in Wyncote, Pa., has a personal best in the 100m HH of 12.95 (+0.2) which she ran to place 14th at the 2016 Olympic Trials after her junior season. Her time of 12.95 tied the Pennsylvania high school girls record and ranks third on the all-time high school hurdler list. She also won the 100m HH title at the New Balance Nationals last summer with a time of 13.01. What makes it even more impressive is that Brissett really only began competing in the hurdles last season. Brissett was named to the USA Today All-USA Girls Track & Field second team.

    McArthur, of Dana Hills High School in Dana Point, Calif., won the USATF Junior hammer throw title with a PR of 203-8 (62.07m) in just her fifth career meet in the discipline. She went on to place ninth in the IAAF U20 World Championships in Poland with a throw of 187-2 (57.04m). Similar to Brissett, she has only been focusing on her specialty for one season. McArthur was named to the USA Today All-USA Girls Track & Field Second Team.



    Moore, of Oaks Christian High School in Westlake Village, Calif., has wind-legal PRs of 10.63 in the 100m and 21.44 in the 200m dashes. He placed fourth in the 200m at the 2016 CIF State meet and has a wind-aided best of 21.17 (+3.0w).

    Roberts, of Carson High School in Carson, Calif., won the 2016 CIF state 400m title with a PR of 52.28, her second California state title in the event. Her time was the third-fastest in the country by a high school athlete last season. She went undefeated in the 400m as a junior and was named to the USA Today All-USA Girls Track & Field First Team. She was also was named the Daily Breeze All-Area Girls Track and Field Athlete of the Year. She also has wind-legal bests of 11.57 in the 100m and 23.52 in the 200m.

    Robinson, of Mira Costa High School in Manhattan Beach, Calif., the 300m hurdler has a best of 42.20 run taking fifth at the 2015 CIF State championships. Robinson took fourth in 2016 with a time of 42.46. She is already the holder of nine Mira Costa HS records.

    Shinnick, of Damien High School in La Verne, Calif., has a 100m personal best of 10.53 and a 200m PR of 21.10 which he ran in taking second place at the 2015 CIF state meet. He also placed third in the 400m at the 2015 CIF State meet with a PR of 47.19.

    Terry, of Northwestern High School in Miami, Fla., has a personal-best 100m time of 11.41 which she ran to place second at the New Balance Nationals. Her time tied for the sixth-fastest high school time in the country. She won the Florida state 100m and 200m titles in 2016 for the second consecutive season and has a 200m PR of 23.55.

    Williams, of Oaks Christian High School in Westlake Village, Calif., has posted wind-legal times of 11.39 in the 100m and 22.80 in the 200m. She also has a wind-aided 22.44 in the 200m which is third all-time under any condition by a high schooler to Allyson Felix (22.11) and Candice Hill (22.43). Williams also has a wind-aided 100m best of 11.17. Williams ran the 11.39 100m time in winning the CIF state title and ran the 22.80 to qualify first for the state 200m final, but suffered muscle pull in the finals and did not finish. Her time of 22.80 was the fastest among all high school women in 2016 and the sixth-fastest in U.S. prep history.