Track and Field

Todd Set to Throw at 2024 NCAA Outdoor Championships on Wednesday

Glacier grad and Montana school record holder Evan Todd will cap his college career throwing the men's javelin the highest level of NCAA competition

By Montana Sports Information
Montana senior Evan Todd competes in the javelin during the Montana Open track and field meet at Dornblaser Stadium on Friday, April 19, 2024. | BEN ALLAN SMITH, Missoulian

Evan Todd will become the first Grizzly since 2019 to compete at the NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships when he throws in the men’s javelin on Wednesday evening. Todd, a three-time Big Sky Champion and Montana’s school record holder, will throw at 6:45 p.m. (MT) at the historic Hayward Field in Eugene, Ore. 

There will be an event-specific live stream on ESPN+.

This week will cap off a legendary collegiate career for Todd. Montana has been JavU for many years, dominating the event at the conference level with eight Big Sky titles since 2010 and 15 overall in program history.

In a long line of great throwers, Todd stands alone at the top. The Kalispell product has seven of the 10 best marks in program history, including the school record of 246-6 that he hit at the Big Sky Championship. The mark was also a Big Sky Championship meet record and a Bobcat Track & Field Complex record.

He had accomplished nearly everything possible in his career up until this point. Now he finally gets the chance to cross the NCAA Championship off his list.

“The emotions are high,” Todd said. “I definitely came to terms in the last few days that this is my last college meet and it really means a lot to finish out on something that I can be proud of.”

His head coach Dog Fraley knows exactly what it takes to reach this stage. In his second year at Montana, Fraley is thrilled to see Todd represent the Grizzlies at the biggest meet in the country.

“It is a great honor to get to this championship,” Fraley said. “It’s the goal of every college athlete to get to the highest level and the NCAA Championship, in any sport, is the highest level in college athletics. I’m really happy for Evan that he gets to experience that in his last year and that he gets to go mix it up with the very best guys in the country and throw his hat in the ring and see where it comes out. I’m really excited to see what he does on that stage.”

In his fourth trip the NCAA West First Round meet, Todd finally got over the hump to qualify for Eugene. Todd placed 9th in the West in Fayetteville, Ark. in late May with a throw of 227-0. The West has been the stronger region, as Todd ranks 13th in the NCAA in the event this season.

The top eight athletes will be named First Team All-American, while the next eight will earn Second Team All-American honors. Todd is looking to become the first outdoor All-American for the Montana men’s team since Dane Brubaker, also in javelin, in 2005.

Todd has been consistent all season long, hitting at least 227-0 in six straight meets. It’s that consistency that will be key for him when the lights get bright in Eugene.

“I think the key to success in your first NCAA Championships is not making it too big in your mind. If you do what got you there, the majority of the time that is enough for you to outperform your seed,” Fraley said. “The mistake a lot of people make going into the NCAAs their first time is they become overwhelmed by the atmosphere and who they are competing against.

“Even though it’s Hayward Field, even though it’s the National Championship, it’s still the javelin throw,” Fraley continued. “Evan needs to treat it the way he’s treated meets all the way through the season. It’s about execution, and about being ready emotionally to to throw the best that you can on that day. If you blow that out of proportion, sometimes you miss the element of what you should be focusing on which is execution to throw as far as you can that day.”

Todd has already secured his legacy at Montana. When he throws on Wednesday, there will be nothing that he needs to do to prove where he belongs in the storied history of Grizzly track and field. It gives him a sense of freedom, but the competitor in him is also focused on the best results possible.

“It’s kind of a victory lap. I’m just soaking up this experience,” Todd said. “A lot of people don’t get to come to this meet and experience this so I’m going to soak it all up and then just focus on executing. To just go in there with a plan and executing on it, that’s really all it comes down to.”