Kyle Arney, propelled by a sore ankle and a prayer, leaped 7 feet 6 inches in the high jump today to write a memorable final chapter to Arizona State's first team title in the NCAA Track and Field Championships.
Arney, a 6-foot-7 junior, made the height on his third attempt, just as he had conquered 7-4 and 7-5, and snatched the victory away from 5-foot-8 Franklin Jacobs of Fairleigh Dickinson. Jacobs' 7-5 clearance, 21 inches over his height, constituted a record of unusual sorts.
Moments before Arney's climactic leap, Arizona State's favored 1,600 meter relay team had been upset by Southern California in 3:04.50. That earned the meet's outstanding performer award for the Trojans' Tom Andrews, who anchored that quartet, team off the victorious 400-meter hurdles.
Clancy Edwards, who pulled up clutching his right hamstring in Friday's 100-meter semifinals, was taped back together by chiropractor Leroy Perry and brought Southern California the 400-meter relay title in 39.56.
Edwards, third when he received the baton, ran down Herman Frazier of Arizona State in the final strides. He came back to finish second in the 200-meter semifinals, but stopped halfway through the final, won by William Snoddy of Oklahoma in 20:48.
Joshua Kimeto and Samson Kimonbwa, Washington State's Keuyan distance tandem, placed 1-2 in the 5,000-meter run. Tony Staynings of Western Kentucky finished third, while Illinois' Craig Virgin, as usual, was the first American home, in fourth place.
Mark Enyeart of Utah State, the 1975 champion, regained his 800-meter title with a front-running 1:45.16. Enycart burned off the opposition with a 51.5 first quarter and went on to set the first meet record of the day. Villanova's Mark Belger was second as four Eastern runners finished in the first six.
Earl Bell of Arkansas State won the pole vault for the third straight year, although the difficult wind conditions kept him under 18 feet, winning at 17-6.
James Muyala of Texas-El Paso became another three-in-row champion by taking the 3,000-meter steeplechase in 8:29.51. Munyala held off fellow Kenyan Henry Rono of Washington State with a last lap of 62.1.
Another member of UTEP's foreign legion, freshman Svein Walvik of Norway, captured the discus at 198-11 as one foot separated the first three competitors.
Tom Andrews of Southern California, the favorite, prevailed in the 400-meter hurdles in 49.48. Herman Frazier of Arizona State was the 400-meter winner in 45.57 as his leading challenger, Willie Smith of Auburn, pulled his left hamstring in the 400-meter relay.
Wilson Waigwa brought UTEP another championship by charging through the final 400 meters in 53 seconds to take the 1.500 meters in 3:39.29. Steve Scott of California-Irvine was a distant second as the field played into Waigwa's hands with an extremely slow pace.
Scott Dykehouse of Florida was the day's most imporbable winner, capturing the javelin at 258-5. Jim Kirby of Maryland was sixth with 245-0.
Dykehouse, who never saw a javelin until he enrolled at Florida three years ago, was the eighth ans last qualifier today, making the final by two inches. He was seventh at 241-2 until his last throw, when he established a personal record.
"I was concentrating on moving up one place, so I'd make All-America," the 6-foot, 185-pounder said. "Then it just happened."
"I made All-America, that's all I could ask," said Kirby, who had not practiced since pulling a groin muscle when his spikes caught in practice Tuesday.
Kirby and Maryland's other All-America, high-hurdles fourth-palcer Greg (Fly) Robertson, plan to compete in the National AAU meet in Los Angeles, June 9-11.