The inside track with Kenny Greaves
Freshman combined events student-athlete Kenny Greaves is the newest Longhorn to continue the Texas tradition of combined events' success.
The first-year Longhorn starred as the starting quarterback for the Coppell High School Cowboys. The 2007 District 6-5A Offensive Player of the Year before making the transition to track and field full time. Greaves, a Coppell, Texas native, comes to the Forty Acres with a modest amount of training in the multi-events but a lengthy collection of academic and athletic achievements during his "off-season" sport.
"In high school, I mainly concentrated on football," said Greaves. "Track was just something I did after football season was over, during off season. I've done track for quite some time but once I decided to come to UT, my focus shifted."
Greaves was primarily a pole vaulter in high school before transitioning to multišs after trying it during a high school track meet. The three-time District 6-5A Pole Vault Champion helped Coppell to the district title in 2005. He finished in a three-way tie for fourth at the 2007 Class 5A state championships, clearing a lifetime best of 16-feet for the fifth highest height in the state of Texas.
"During high school, I picked up the decathlon in the summer for USATF," said Greaves. "I did a couple for my sophomore year, took a break for my junior year, and for my senior year, I did one or two. Before I started at UT, when I knew I would focus on track, I started training for it and picking up all the events."
Once Greaves did, he was a natural success. He finished second in the intermediate boys decathlon, scoring 4,871 points at the 2004 USATF Region 12 Junior Olympic Championship. He placed eighth at the 2004 USATF Junior Olympics, scoring 5,435 points in the decathlon.
Greaves joins an elite Texas combined event group, which is known as one of the best in the nation in athletics and academics. NCAA collegiate record holder Trey Hardee completed his third season at UT and is currently an advertising graduate student on the Forty Acres. The Longhorns' Donovan Kilmartin is the only three-time male NCAA Heptathlon National Champion, and the engineering graduate student is also a two-time ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America First Team selection. In 2007, two freshmen Shawn Schmidt and Andrew Webb qualified for NCAA's in their first season of outdoor competition.
Greaves adds academics to his stock. He graduated as an Advanced Placement Scholar and National Honor Society member who finished in the top five percent of his class of 686 students.
Greaves is using track to get a degree, hopefully in engineering. Like running, his career aspirations started at an early age.
"All through elementary school, when we would pick interesting careers to research, I would always choose architecture," said Greaves. "I've always done architecture projects and Išve always thought it was a cool. I took a couple of classes in high school that kind of dealt with it a little bit which peaked my interest for college."
GETTING TO KNOW KENNY GREAVES