Tyreek Hill wanted to hear no mocking of his track achievement. He won a national indoor title in the 60 meters, Saturday. Sure, it was a master’s event.
And, sure, the men competing against him in the finals didn’t have his credentials. Tyreek Hill is an NFL receiver who goes by the nickname “Cheetah.” These guys were sprinters in the 25 to 29-year-old category.
Hill, the Miami Dolphins star, ran a 6.7-second time in the 60. Runner up Dainen Brass finished in 7.27. He was an all-conference sprinter for Christopher Newport University in Virginia. Brian Burnett finished third. He was a star at D-III Ohio Wesleyan.
Hill tweeted: “All the track athletes mad like didn’t I use to beat you in high school bud.” He punctuated the tweet with a smirking emoji.
First, let’s look back on Tyreek Hill’s performance.Typically, the finishers of a 60-meter indoors race are separated by one-hundredths of a second. Winning by a half second is a significant margin.
Hill hasn’t raced competitively since 2014, when he was with Garden City Community College. Hill can show off some legit track speed. Growing up in Georgia, he got near the national high school outdoor record for the 200 meters. Plus, Track and Field News named him as the high school boy’s track athlete of the year.
But he gave it up all to play football in college, then the NFL. But on Saturday, Tyreek Hill definitely flashed back to the track glory days.
So who mocked Tyreek Hill? Carl Lewis did. At 61, he’s an old dude now. But back in the day, Lewis won nine Olympic gold medals for the sprints and long jump. Lewis tweeted a gif when he saw the video of Hill.
Meanwhile, Trey Hardee analyzed Tyreek Hill’s performance. Hardee is a former world champion and Olympic silver medalist in the decathlon. He now works as a track analyst for NBC. Hardee tweeted: “Faster than I anticipated, honestly. He really could FLY in college, but nearly a decade of ONLY football don’t make you “track fast.”
Jasmine Todd, a world championship silver medalist, posted some context about the Dolphin wideout. “Tyreek Hill ran 6.70 at the USATF Masters meet’s 25-29 category.” (she then used a clown and cheetah emoji).
“Three high school boys ran faster at New Balance Nationals this morning in the prelims. Maybe call them out first before going after Olympic and World Championship medalist.” A month ago, Hill challenged anyone to race him. Leroy Bromell, a world championship medalist, said he’d race Hill, but, so far, the two haven’t competed against each other.
Then there’s Michael Johnson, who won four Olympic gold medals and eight at the world championships in the 200 and 400 meters. Johnson didn’t mention Tyreek Hill’s name. Rather, he referred to his 100 time.
“A 10.18 sprinter claims he can compete with the worlds best. No one pays any attention because it’s ridiculous right? But when it’s an NFL star things change. I get the intrigue but unless that race happens the media attention puts them on equal footing. And who does that hurt?”