With over 65,000 student-athletes (male and female), Track & Field is one of the University sports with the greatest history and tradition. Moreover, it is also among the very few sports that can boast a double season, which allows, in many cases, athletes to compete from December to June.
In fact, Track & Field has an indoor season that begins in December with the first competitions and ends with the national finals in March when the Indoor National Champions get crowned. However, from the end of February, the first outdoor competitions begin and the tournaments leading to the National Championships follow one another until late May: the finals, where only the best teams and student-athletes of the nation can qualify to, which generally take place in June.
Many Universitites conduct both seasons, but not all: some participate only in the indoor or outdoor one. In each official competition, student-athletes compete both individually and as a team: at the end of each competition both the individual rankings and the overall rankings of the Universities are drawn up. The concept of being a team, while practicing an individual sport is very important and it is the spirit that they immediately try to convey to freshmen, especially if they come from other countries.
The Track & Field's teams composition is diverse: you can find very numerous teams with athletes of all disciplines and teams that instead can only offer a few in the athletic program; in some of them, the coaches of each speciality train both male and female while others are separated; sometimes, the Track team is joined to the Cross Country one, medium and long distances are favored while speed athletes are absent. However, with nearly 1300 University institutions having Track & Field programs spread across the different leagues and divisions, all disciplines of this sport are very well represented. Becoming a student-athlete in an American college allows you to continue your academic career by practicing your discipline at a very competitive level and often being able to aspire to the possibility of obtaining athletic or academic scholarships.