Western News

Ackeen Colley on the move

Thursday, June 28, 2018

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MONTEGO BAY, St James — After just one year at American International College in Springfield, Massachusetts, former Rusea's High and Jamaican junior middle-distance runner Ackeen Colley could be on the move again.

Colley, who represented Jamaica at the Carifta Games and Pan-American junior championships last year, had a good season at the Division 2 institution in rural Massachusetts, but has set his sights on the bright lights of the Division 1 level.

In a recent interview with the Jamaica Observer West, Colley, who finished third in the 800m in last weekend's JAAA National Senior Championships, at the National Stadium in Kingston, said he is still trying to decide between the University of Oklahoma in the Big 12 Conference and the University of Akron in the mid-American Conference.

Colley, who won the 1500m at both COCAA Western Champs and the ISSA/GraceKennedy Boys' Championships in 2017, told Observer West that while he found the Division 2 competition challenging, he wanted to test himself among the best athletes in the US college system.

“The Division 2 was okay, but I am in the process of switching to the Division 1, either Akron or Oklahoma; I have not yet decided,” said the athlete.

Colley said he had asked for and received a release from the scholarship at American International and was in discussions with coaches from both institutions.

“They both have experienced coaches and there is not much difference between both, but wherever I go, I know that I will develop and grow as an athlete,” he reasoned.

The tall athlete, who ran a personal best 1 minute 48.78 seconds at an indoor meet at Boston University, noted that he had learnt a lot in his first season on the US circuit.

“It was a good first season, one which I really enjoyed. I learnt a lot and have grown a lot as an athlete, and it sets the stage for a big season next year for me.”

Despite the lessons learned, there were some disappointments, as he failed to make it to either the indoors or outdoors final, finishing 10th after the preliminaries in both instances.

He ran 1:49.48 seconds at the NCAA Division 2 championships in May, after he had clocked 1:52.14 seconds at the indoor championships in early March.

Colley described his 1:48.78 seconds race as the highlight of his year, but pointed out that he also had other good results of which he is proud and is hoping to surpass them come next year.

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