University of Georgia junior decathlete and Germantown Academy alum Kyle Garland '18 destroyed the collegiate decathlon record with 8,720 points and qualified to be on Team USA for the coming World Athletics Championships to wrap up the USA Track & Field Combined Events Championships in Fayetteville, Ark. on Saturday. Garland posted six personal bests out of his 10 events, including his final three to end the competition. His 8,720 score left the former collegiate record of 8,539 far behind as he became the No. 7 American performer in history.
By securing a top-three finish and scoring more than 8,350 points, Garland also qualified for a spot on Team USA for the coming World Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Ore., on July 15-24. The top three finishers from the meet will also have the opportunity to be invited to compete during the Thorpe Cup and other U.S. combined event competitions.
Garland moves into the 2022 NCAA lead over Arkansas' Ayden Owens, who was No. 2 on the all-time collegiate list with 8,528 points. Garland is now No. 2 on the 2022 world list behind former Bulldog Garrett Scantling, who won the meet with 8,867 points. Finally, Garland takes over the school record since Karel Tilga owned it with an 8,484 from the 2021 Spec Towns Invitational.
Garland scored a day one personal best of 4,660 points to be 157 points ahead of former Bulldog All-American Garrett Scantling at the meet. His tally passed Lindon Victor's previous day one collegiate decathlon best of 4,516 from 2017 thanks in part to a personal best of 10.63 in the 100m, a 7.86 meters mark in the long jump, and a mark of 16.44m to win the shot put. More of the same continued in the high jump as Garland cleared a competition best 2.16m. He completed his Friday after taking sixth in the 400m with a 49.04.
Garland started his day two off with a personal best in the 110-meter hurdles with a 13.71. This gave him a second-place finish and placed him fifth on Georgia's all-time top-10 list in the event. Garland then sandwiched a mark of 46.16 meters in the discus to keep pace in the overall race. He was fifth in the event and remained in first place following the seventh event. Garland rode three first attempt clearances to start the pole vault on Saturday and then finished with a pair of second try clearances, including at a personal best height of 4.85m.
Garland registered yet another personal record in the javelin. He built to a third and final toss of 59.63m to solidify his foundation as a runner-up to Scantling. In the finale of two-day event, Garland situated himself in the back half of the 1500m pack and ran the fastest time of his life with a 4:43.21, edging the 4:44 he clocked during his victorious competition at the 2021 SEC Championships.