N.C. A&T To Host AAU Junior Olympics Track Meet


EAST GREENSBORO, N.C. (July 26, 2019) – North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University Athletics is preparing to host the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) Junior Olympics national track and field championships July 26 through Aug. 3.

The meet, to be held at Irwin Belk Track, is considered the marquee event of the 53rd annual AAU Junior Olympic Games for boys and girls ages 4 to 19 from across the country. aau-logo-130.jpg

Billy Edringston, associate athletics director in charge of facilities and game day operations, said a lot of preparation and cooperation has happened behind the scenes leading up to the meet. Staff at the Student Center, police department and BB&T Stadium, to name a few, are as involved as city, county and other public officials.

The campus will see a high volume of traffic and vehicles using several parking areas, but no major disruptions to normal operations are expected.

“This event encompasses the entire campus community. There are a lot of moving parts, and all of them are instrumental,” Edringston said. “We’ve hosted large events before, but none this big. We’re looking forward to it.”

The effort would not be possible without the support of university administrators, from Chancellor Harold L. Martin Sr. on down the chain of command, who “all understand the big picture,” Edringston said.

“The biggest thing is we’re bringing potential students to our campus who will be able to see firsthand what N.C. A&T has to offer,” he said. “It’s an excellent recruitment tool.”

According to AAU USA, nearly 250 track and field national records have been shattered at the games since 2011, with 17 records established during last year’s games in Des Moines, Iowa. Notable AAU Junior Olympic Games alumni include track and field athletes Charles Foster, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Kathy McMillan, Carl Lewis, and twins Shaquill and Shaquem Griffin.

The national track and field championships are expected to account for more than 13,500 participants alone, according a (Greensboro) News & Record report. They are part of an 11-day event featuring 17 sports, with most competitions taking place in Greensboro. City officials said the games represent the largest sporting event in terms of participants in the city’s history.