Last week, UB alumnus and NCAA champion Jon Jones looked to become an Olympian in the shot put. Jones made the finals of the U.S. Olympic Trials but faulted on all three of his throws when he made the penultimate round. This week, UB alumna and former shot putter Becky O'Brien also tried to book a ticket to Rio de Janeiro but alas, she too failed to qualify.
O'Brien ultimately finished 16th overall today with a throw of 17.06 meters. Although her best throw wasn't far enough to take her to the finals, her mark was 0.90 meters farther than her previous bout in the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials.
In her time as a Bull, Becky received many accolades including four MAC Championships and multiple MAC and UB records. She won two outdoor shot put championships (2010-11), an indoor shot put championship (2011), and an outdoor discus championship (2011). She also received second team All-America honors following her 11th place showing at the 2011 NCAA Indoor Championships.
O'Brien forfeited her final season at Buffalo and soon took a break from throwing the shot put after being frustrated with the sport. She soon started a consulting business in personal fitness. In November of 2013, she was hired as the throwing coach for the University of Southern Maine and steadily worked towards this year's Olympic Trials.
Her personal best of 18.21 meters from over a year ago would've put her fourth in the shot put qualifier, advancing her to this year's Olympic Trials finals. The next Olympic Trials will be held four years from now for Tokyo 2020, in which O'Brien will be 29 years of age. Only time will tell if O'Brien will try to make another attempt at becoming an Olympian.