MINNEAPOLIS (GopherSports.com) - Following a successful senior campaign, University of Minnesota men's track & field team captain Luca Wieland has been named the 2017 Big Ten Outdoor Field Athlete of the Year, the conference announced on Wednesday afternoon.
A 2017 Big Ten Medal of Honor recipient for the Maroon & Gold, Wieland's outdoor campaign in 2017 was highlighted by a First Team All-America performance and a school record in the decathlon while he also added a Big Ten title in the high jump last month.
Wieland is the fourth Gopher to earn Big Ten Field Athlete of the Year honors, joining Derek Gearman (2017 Outdoor), Matt Fisher (2009 Indoor) and Aaron Studt (2009 Outdoor).
A native of Saarbrucken, Germany, closed out his collegiate career with a third-place finish in the decathlon at the 2017 NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships last week, earning his third career First Team All-America honor and first in the decathlon (he also earned the distinction twice in the heptathlon). His final score of 8,146 is the second highest point total in University of Minnesota history behind his own school record of 8,201 from earlier this year.
The senior added his fourth career Big Ten title crown in 2017 when he won the outdoor high jump - he previously won back-to-back conference decathlon titles in 2015 and 2016 as well as a heptathlon championship in 2015. Wieland totaled 20 points for the Gophers at this year's Big Ten outdoor meet - claiming 10 as high jump champion to go with six points as the third-place finisher in the long jump and another four points with a fifth-place showing in the 4x100 meter relay.
In his final year at Minnesota, Wieland set three school records including two during the outdoor campaign - the decathlon (8,201 points), the heptathlon (6,070 points) and the outdoor 4x100 meter relay (39.80).
As a sophomore, Wieland became the 13th individual national champion in Gophers program history when he won the 2015 NCAA heptathlon title.
A three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree, Wieland is an entrepreneurial management major in Minnesota's Carlson School of Management. He is a two-time Academic All-American and is a candidate once again this year.
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McKeag’s first throw of the day proved to be his best with a personal record of 63.97 meters (209-10 ft.).
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Outdoor All-Americans Obsa Ali and Jackson Wellenstein lead the Maroon & Gold into competition with the action slated to run May 24-26 at Sacramento State's Hornet Stadium.