Peter D. Parks was awarded the Gordon E. Sawyer Award at the 2003 Academy Awards for his work on Bugs! A Rainforest Adventure.
TCU FLYING FROGS
1928 - Present
Track and field is an individual effort, but it also has team components. Sprint relays (either the 4 x 100-meters or 4 x 400-meters) rely on four athletes exchanging a baton in precision while maintaining the speed to win the race. It is a race of individuals and of teams, and Texas Christian University’s (TCU) men’s 4 x 100-meter relay teams have dominated the competition during the past three decades.
TCU’s sprinting prowess began in the early 1930s with Cy Leland, who tied a world record in the 100-yard dash in 9.4 seconds at the 1930 Kansas Relays. Fellow Frog Elmer Helbing, a Northside High School graduate, raced a close second to famed sprinter Jesse Owens during a 1933 220-yard race in Chicago. He ran for the Frogs during 1935, setting a school record in the 100-yard dash.
September 9, 1968 -
Drummond, known as the “Clown Prince of Track and Field, is considered one of the world’s best starters in the sprint. A three-time All-American sprinter while at TCU (1989-1991), he won the 100 meters during the Southwest Conference Championship and the Penn Relays; he also anchored TCU’s 4 x 100-meter relay to a NCAA title.
Since turning professional, Drummond has won a silver medal at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, running the opening leg of the 4 x 100-meter for the American effort. He is a two-time U.S. Indoor National Champion in the 60-meters dash (1993 and 2000) and the 1997 U.S. Outdoor National Champion in the 200-meters. He has won gold medals in the 200-meters and 4 x 100-meter relay at the 1991 World University Games. In addition, he took gold and captured a world record (37.40) in the 4 x 100-meter relay during the 1993 World Championships.
Drummond suffered a third case of spinal meningitis in 1999, but recovered from the life-threatening disease to run the opening leg in a gold medal-winning American 4 x 100-meter relay team at the 1999 World Championships in Seville, Spain. The following year in Sydney, he again ran the opening leg in the relay, winning a gold medal. In 2001 at the World Championships in Edmonton, Canada, Drummond ran the lead off leg where he pulled a quadricep muscle, but continued to run and completed the pass to his teammate, winning a Gold medal.
Drummond is most known for his protest at the 2003 World Championships in Paris, France, where he was accused of a false-start in the quarter finals of the 100-meters. The unprecedented event herald Jon a hero among the sprint community, as a new rule concerning false-starts now allows athletes to compete under protest. He completed his running career in 2004 winning first place in the 100-meters and the 4 x 100-meter relay at the Penn Relays in his hometown Philadelphia. Since retiring he has been coaching/training other world-class track athletes, pastoring and is the current Chairman of the Athletes Advisory Committee of USA Track and Field.
July 19, 1976 -
Known as KD, Robinson was a standout football player until he suffered a broken wrist during his junior year at Fort Worth’s Trimble Technical High School. He turned to track as a way to achieve his goals; attending TCU provided him the tools to find success.
Robinson became one of the most successful 800-meter runners in TCU’s track history, logging the two best outdoor times in school history. In 1998 he won the NCAA Outdoor Championship 800-meter race to conclude his college career.
Once Robinson became a professional, his career blossomed. Running in Maebashi, Japan, he participated in the USA’s gold medal performance in the 4 x 400-meter 1999 World Indoor Championship. Four times he has won the 800-meter USA Outdoor Championships (1999, 2005, 2006, 2007) and four times he has won the 800-meter USA Indoor Championships (1999, 2006, 2008, 2009). In August 2006, he helped the USA 4 x 800-meter relay team break the 24-year-old world record and 20-year-old American record at a meet in Brussels, Belgium. Robinson ran the fastest leg of all competing teams in the relay with a time of 1:43.8
While training in California, Robinson earned a masters degree in Public Administration from California State University–Los Angeles, began coaching, and public speaking. Using the lessons he learned about life from his family, friends, school, and the spirit of track competition, Robinson found the greatness locked within himself.
December 4, 1977 –
One of the most versatile performers in TCU track and field history, “Doc” Patton’s track career began slowly. While at Dallas Lake Highlands High School, Patton competed in the long jump and triple jump but did not make the school’s relay team.
In 2000, Patton became the first TCU athlete to win an indoor conference long jump title and the first Horned Frog to win a conference long jump crown of any kind since 1970. During his senior season (2001) alone, Patton garnered seven All-America certificates, and notched ten All-American honors in just two seasons. He also honed his sprinting skills as a part of the 2000 relay team that won the 4 x 100-meter and the 4 x 200-meter races at the Penn Relays; the 4 x 200-meter team set a collegiate record of 1:19.67.
Since turning professional, Patton has found success running the 100 and 200. He was a two-time U.S. champion in the 200-meter (2002, 2003). He won the silver medal in the 200-meter and the gold in the 4 x 100-meter relay at the 2003 World Championships in Paris. During the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Patton helped the American 4 x 100-meter relay team breeze through the heats; he was substituted during the finals and the team ran a slower race, finishing with the silver medal.
Patton was a part of the U.S. 4 x 100-meter relay team that won a gold medal during the 2007 World Championship at Osaka, Japan. Since 2008 his sprint times have gotten better and better as he has often run below a 10.0 seconds 100-meters, making him one of the fastest men in the world.