It was reported on Jan. 12 that at the 103rd running of the Millrose Games, there will be a special heat of the 60-meter dash were football players will race one another. Already scheduled to run are David Tyree, Tim Dwight and Willie Gault — yes the 49 year-old Willie Gault.
According to the Millrose Games official website, the event is to highlight some of the Super Bowl’s most recognizable heroes who’ve all had track experience in the past. Tyree is known for his catch in Super Bowl XLI where he pinned the ball against his helmet — a play that helped set-up the Giants of the upset over the Patriots. Tyree lettered in track while at Syracuse.
Tim Dwight was an NCAA all-american in track while attending Iowa as a member of the Hawkeyes 1600-meter relay team. He also won the 1999 Big Ten title in the 100. Dwight opened Super Bowl XXXIII with a 94-yard kickoff return for the Falcons in which they lost to the Broncos.
OK, so Gault won a bronze medal in the 110 hurdles but that was in 1983. Surely at 49 he can’t still be able to move right? Well, Gault did break the world 200 record with a 21.80 at the 2008 Mt. SAC Relays — for the 45-49 age group. He also ran a 10.72 100 — as a 45 year older.
More participants for the ‘Super 60’ will be revealed in coming weeks.
But this concept got me thinking — which NFL star need to line up on the track with his spikes and speedsuit? If you want to stick with Super Bowl heroes, you have to throw in Desmond Howard. Howard was named Super Bowl XXXI MVP in 1996 mainly because of his 154 kickoff return yards. However, throw away the Super Bowl legend concept and I’ll give you two — Chris Johnson and Adrian Peterson.
We all know about Johnson’s 4.24 40-yard dash time, one of the fastest in history. His 2,000 yards were highlighted by three touchdown runs of 85-plus yards. Each run he simply out ran EVERYBODY, displaying that he is indeed the fastest in the game.
BUT, Peterson isn’t a slouch. His 40 time of a 4.4 doesn’t seem as fast until you add the fact that he stands 6-foot-1 (Johnson is 5’11) and weighs 217 pounds (Johnson is 200). The most impressive thing is that Peterson has a sprinter stride — back slightly straight and knees up. A runner whose acceleration phase would be a lot better than his drive phase. Meaning, his finish would be his strongest part of the race (much like Usain Bolt).
So whoever fills out the field, the Super 60 should be a lot of fun and at worst a lot of laughs.
Watch the Millrose Games Friday, Jan. 29 on ESPN2 beginning at 8 p.m. The annual meet is held at Madison Square Garden.