The Kansas track and field team will be adding a group of seven talented athletes—two men, five women—to the 2012 recruiting class, said coach Stanley Redwine. Three of the women are coming from Missouri, including standout sprinter Tianna Valentine from St. Louis. Two distance runners, Jasmine Edwards from Kearney, Mo. and Hannah Richardson of Kirkwood, Mo., will also join the Kansas program next season.
Another welcome addition to the team is middle-distance runner Rhavean King from Memphis, Tenn. With three senior athletes graduating this year, there is certainly room for King to thrive during her first year on the team. She is Tennessee’s defending state champion in the 800-meter race, and she has the fastest time in the state in the 400-meter race this year.
Lawrence native Lynn Robinson, a senior at Free State High School, will also run track and cross country for Kansas next season. Robinson was an all-state and all-regional selection in 2011, and she ran her personal best time in the 1,600-meter race at the Kansas Relays last April.
Only two men signed on for next year’s men’s team, but both athletes have been very successful on the track thus far. Drew Matthews is a middle-distance runner from Sammamish, Wash., where he ran the second-fastest 400-meter time in the state last year. The other athlete who signed is Ty Williams from Telluride, Colo., who is the 2011 Gatorade Colorado Boys Cross Country Athlete of the Year.