US track & field Olympians sent home for positive COVID tests/
Old and busted, 2020: Tracking the college track & field programs cut due to COVID-induced budget restrictions. New hotness, 2021: tracking the US track & field Olympians cut due to COVID testing protocols.

Us, on July 27: “Simply playing the numbers, more athletes, including some from track & field, will be sent home before they can compete.”

July 29: It begins.

We spent a good chunk of last year keeping up with the universities that cut (and, for reasons some understandable and some craven, restored) their track & field programs due to COVID-related budget cuts. Outside of a few status quo defenders, those produced what we could call “track & field crickets”: a shrug accompanied by something like “oh well that sucks.” Far less refreshing than Irish crickets.

In any event, since this list will only grow in the coming days, we’ll do our best to keep up with the US track & field Olympians who are sent home - not DQ’d, but DNS’d, because so much better that way - for a positive COVID test in the Olympic Village.

Sam Kendricks, Pole Vault

The 2016 Olympic bronze medalist, two-time outdoor World Champion, two-time indoor World Champion, American record holder and viral-for-the-right-national-anthem-related-reasons star Sam Kendricks.

As ridiculous as this is, at least Kendricks was the the one with the actual positive test. Always wanting to take their COVID absurdity to 11, the Aussies rushed their entire track & field squad into an emergency quarantine pending their own tests since a few of the vaulters were deemed in close contact with Kendricks.


And to think somebody (many somebodies, in fact) all thought these were worthwhile ways of going about a sporting event.