Devon Allen inching closer to full strength
Brophy Prep star hurdler/sprinter Devon Allen was coughing after his 4×100 meter relay leg on Saturday at the Chandler Rotary Invitational, as allergies and a lack of endurance had him at less than full strength.
Allen, the Tribune’s Boys Track Athlete of the Year in 2012, has only competed periodically this season because of a nagging ankle injury which he suffered in the football state playoffs and aggravated in an All-Star game about a month later. He ran a 400-meter dash two weeks ago and did the 4×100 and 4×400 relays at the Rotary, but has yet to run the 100- and 200-meter dashes or either hurdle event.
“It’s a little bit (frustrating) because I’ve not been able to do what I’m used to doing,” Allen said. “The workouts have been pretty hard for me. I’m not feeling too good afterwards. I’m not able to get out of the blocks yet with my push not being there. Hopefully I’ll be able to get out of the blocks next week. Other than that, it’s all right, it’s just kind of frustrating seeing all the races I could have been running in.”
He won the hurdles at state last season and finished second in both the sprints, and he could win all four at state if he can get healthy.
Allen is aiming to return to the hurdles at the Arcadia Invitational in Calif. in two weeks, an event where he starred last season. However, at less than full strength, it seems unlikely he can match the times he ran last year. Allen set state records in both events at the meet in 2012, finishing the 110-meter hurdles in 13.52 seconds and the 300 in 36.39.
Allen said the ankle injury doesn’t bother him at full speed, but he can feel it as he decelerates. With physical therapy, he hopes to be completely healthy in the next two or three weeks.
Then he will start tuning up for state in early May, and, the ultimate goal, the USA Junior Outdoor Track & Field Championships, which will be held from June 19-22 in Des Moines, Iowa.
Allen seemed likely to break his hurdle records after last year’s great finish, and he wanted to challenge the state records in the 100- and 200-meter dashes as well. It remains to be seen if those are viable goals now that he has missed a good chunk of the season dealing with the sprained ankle.