American Triple Jump legend Mike Conley Sr describes Jaydon Hibbert as “special”- “He was born to do it”

By Sports Desk May 13, 2023

Olympic and World triple jump champion, Mike Conley Sr, has described Jamaican Arkansas freshman Jaydon Hibbert as “special” and said he was “born for the sport.”

Conley Sr, the 60-year-old Arkansas alum who won Olympic gold in 1992 in Barcelona with a wind-aided 18.17m jump as well as a World Championship title in Stuttgart with a 17.86m effort a year later, was speaking in an interview on his alma mater’s Instagram page on Saturday.

“He’s special. I got a chance to see him when they recruited him. I saw some video of him from the World Juniors and got a chance to meet him and talk to him. He’s a way better jumper than I ever was technique-wise. It took me almost a lifetime to look like he looks as a freshman so he’s a special guy,” said Conley Sr.

At those World Juniors in Cali in 2022, Hibbert produced a personal best and championship record 17.27m to take gold.

“It’s amazing. When I saw him at the juniors I just said ‘wow.’ For his form and technique to be advanced as it is, he was born to do it and he puts in the work on top of it. That’s usually the recipe for greatness,” said Conley Sr.

Hibbert has enjoyed an excellent debut season at Arkansas. The 18-year-old has, so far, gone unbeaten in three competitions indoors and two outdoors.

At the NCAA Indoor championships in Albuquerque in March, Hibbert made history with a leap of 17.54m, a new World Under-20 record, to win the title. Hibbert’s jump also broke Conley Sr’s collegiate record 17.40m.

Outdoors, he followed up a gold medal at the Carifta Games in Nassau on April 10 with a 17.17m effort to win at the LSU Invitational on April 29.

He is also a heavy favorite to win the title at the SEC Outdoor Championships which are currently being held at LSU.

“He seems humble, eager to learn and he works hard. Like I said, that’s a good recipe for success,” Conley Sr added.

Conley Sr’s personal best 17.87, done in June 1987, places him 13th on the all-time list for the event.

 

 

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