Today's the day for UB alum and former NCAA Division I National Champion Jon Jones. After his championship just over a year ago, we all learned that he had been competing for months with injured knees and potentially had a big increase in distance coming with health.
In competitions since, Jones placed third at the USATF Indoor Nationals and fifth in the IAAF Indoor World Championships - the highest-finishing American - earlier this year.
It's worth noting that Jones will likely need to improve by at least .50 meters on his personal outdoor best of 20.92m to qualify for the Olympics, as many of the USA's top throwers were not in attendance at IAAF Worlds and have personal bests well past 21.00 meters.
First things first, Jon will need to finish in the top half of 24 qualifiers competing this afternoon before the finals tonight. I'll be updating this space as the afternoon goes on:
I didn't realize at earlier writing that if Jones hits 20.50m, that's an autoqualifier for tonight's finals. I'd say that's pretty likely, especially after...
Throw 1: 20.36m - he's guaranteed to sit top-12 after the first round, and that's a great starting point when most folks are just trying to get on the board with a safe throw.
Throws 2 and 3: The live results stopped updating, but Jones advances to tonight's final sitting 7th after the prelims. I'll have more data once something updates.
Throw 1 is a foul. Distances don't look too unattainable in the first go-round.
Throw 2 is a foul after a few big throws at the top of the board. I'm thinking he's going for broke now. Not sure if the field will be culled by half after three throws.
Throw 3 is a foul. Bummer.
Looks indeed like Jon's night is done, as only the top eight after three throws are taking their fourth.