Frank Costello, Maryland's track coach, was in Chicago yesterday for a clinic and one would imagine his chief concern about today's triangular meet against Navy and Princeton at Annapolis would be the possibility of finding himself snowbound and missing it.
Instead, Costello confessed to some trepidation about the outcome. A year ago, his Terrapins managed only a four-point victory in a dual meet with the Mids. Costello thinks this year's expanded edition could be just as close.
"I have a lot of respect for Navy," Costello said. "They're real tough this year and the indoor mee against them at Navy is always very competitive. You'll never see a meet that's any more competitive. I expect a tight track meet, but I will say that I don't expect to lose the hurdles."
Representing the Terrapins is Renaldo Nehemiah, the world indoor record holder, and he is likely to destroy his own Halsey Field House Hurdles mark of 7.1 seconds. In addition, Nehemiah will run the 60-yard dash and, if the meet is still close, the mile relay.
"We ought to fill this place up Sunday," said Navy Coach Jim Gehrdes, once an ICAA hurdles champion himself. "I stopped long ago trying to predict the outcome of the Maryland meet. We always seem to stay close indoors, then we get killed when we go outdoors."
Maryland has beaten Navy indoors four years in a row, but its track program has been heading more toward big-meet contention and away from the duel-meet atmosphere in which Navy thrives.
Among the most competitive events are the high jump, where Navy's Brian Carmichael and Maryland's Mike Corbin have cleared 6-10; the pole vault matching 16-footers Jim Dillingham of Navy and Chip McCarthy of Maryland; the 600, pairing the Mids' Jeff Colvin and the Terrapins' Mark Fields, and the climactic two-mile relay.
Princeton has a sure winner in weightman Dave Pellegrini, but it does not figure to be any more than a spoiler in the team scoring, to be determined on a 5-3-2-1 basis.
The event became a three-way contest when the usual mid-January Navy-Maryland date was ruled out because of changed academic schedules.
The 35-pound weight throw will be held outdoors at 1 p.m. The field events will begin at 2, with Nehemiah's hurdles trials opening track activity at 2:30. The meet is scheduled to end at 5. Admission is $2.