BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Texas A&M’s Athing Mu garnered SEC Runner of the Year and Freshman of the Year as Tyra Gittens was named the Field Athlete of the Year as voted on by the league’s head coaches, it was announced Wednesday.
The duo are the only teammates to claim yearly honors on the women’s side, while Mu was the only athlete, male or female, to be named to two accolades. It is the second yearly honor for Gittens’ career. In 2018, she was named the SEC Freshman Field Athlete of the Year.
Mu, from Trenton, New Jersey, won the SEC 800m title with a collegiate-record time of 1:58.40. It was also a World U20 record, pending ratification. She became the second-fastest American in the indoor 800m all-time. Prior to the SEC title, she set two other collegiate records during the regular season. Mu broke a near 40-year-old record in the 600m with a time of 1:25.80. She ran a 50.27 anchor to help the Aggies break the 4x400m record with a time of 3:26.27.
The middle distance sprinter set Texas A&M school records in the 400m (50.52), 600m and 800m, as well as the 4x400m. She earned four USTFCCCA National Athlete of the Week honors, three SEC weekly honors and was named the United States Track & Field Athlete of the Week on Feb. 12.
Gittens, from Trinidad and Tobago, highlighted the 2021 SEC Indoor Championships, winning the high jump and long jump. She scored 23 points at the championships, finishing the meet as the top point scorer, earning the Cliff Harper Award for the second consecutive season. It was the first time a female SEC athlete received the award outright in back-to-back seasons since 1997.
During the regular season, she set school records in the high jump (1.91m/6-3.25) and pentathlon (4,612). On Jan. 29, she won the Texas Tech Invitational pentathlon with a personal-best score of 4,612. She became the third-best performer in collegiate history. Gittens cleared 1.91m/6-3.25 in the high jump, it was the fifth highest clearance all-time during the pentathlon. She was named the USTFCCCA National Athlete of the Week for her efforts.
The multi-athlete finished the season as the only athlete to be ranked in the top-five in three individual events. She leads the NCAA in the high jump, pentathlon and is No. 5 in the long jump at 6.62m/21-8.75.
2021 SEC Indoor Track and Field Awards
Women’s Runner of the Year: Athing Mu, Texas A&M
Women’s Field Athlete of the Year: Tyra Gittens, Texas A&M
Women’s Freshman Runner of the Year: Athing Mu, Texas A&M
Women’s Freshman Field Athlete of the Year: Monique Hardy, LSU
Women’s Scholar-Athlete of the Year: Katie Izzo, Arkansas
Women’s Coach of the Year: Lance Harter, Arkansas
Men’s Runner of the Year: Terrance Laird, LSU
Men’s Field Athlete of the Year: JuVaughn Harrison, LSU
Men’s Freshman Runner of the Year: Cole Bullock, Ole Miss
Men’s Freshman Field Athlete of the Year: Sean Dixon-Bodie, LSU
Men’s Scholar-Athlete of the Year: Matthew Boling, Georgia
Men’s Coach of the Year: Chris Bucknam, Arkansas