Jacoby Ford, a newly minted graduate of Cardinal Newman High School of West Palm Beach, isn't complaining: The two-sport superstar swept the 100-meter and 200-meter dashes at the FHSAA 2A State Championships in 10.32 and 21.25 respectively. But in some respects he might have wanted a little less help from the elements this spring.
Jacoby's 10.21 at the Palm Beach County Championships in April is the fastest non-altitude aided time in the nation so far this spring, but was assisted by a strong tailwind. Similarly, his 100-meter time at the FHSAA meet was aided by an almost-legal 2.6-meters-per-second breeze. His wind-legal 21.25 has him flirting with the top ten schoolboy performances in the country.
"It doesn't really bother me," allows Ford, whose best legal mark in the 100 this spring is 10.50. "I think I could run [the time] without the wind." The U.S.A.'s fastest legal prep time so far in 2005 is 10.38 by Jamere Holland of Woodland Hills, Calif.; Ford surely would have threatened this standard with a slightly less pronounced push down the stretch of the Coral Springs High School track at States.
Ford says winning both the 100 and 200 were season-long goals, though he prefers the shorter event. In wclaiming the 2A 200-meter title, Ford avenged his only two losses of the season, both to Deonte Thompson of Glades Central, who took Ford's measure at both the county and regional championships. He lists his favorite sprinter in the professional ranks as Mo Greene.
Ford, a highly touted wide receiver who plans to attend the University of Miami this fall and considers football his primary sport, also says the otherworldly season of Walter Dix – a 2004 Coral Springs High School grad now at Florida State University whose 10.06 in the 100 ties him for first in the NCAA – has given him a degree of inspiration with regard to his own chances of future success. "That just shows," he says, "that I can move up if I keep doing the training."