How New Jersey was the highest-scoring U.S. state at the World Championships!!!!!!

World Athletics added a team scoring element to this year’s meet in Eugene, and not surprisingly the United States won the team title, nearly tripling 2nd-place Jamaica.

The U.S. finished with 328 points on an 8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 scoring system, with Jamaica [110], Ethiopia [106] and Kenya [104] next.

But what about a team competition within the U.S.?

Who was the top state?

The answer to that question might surprise you.

Tim Callinan had this brilliant idea to take all 328 U.S. points (minus relays) and score the meet by state. So he researched where every U.S. top-eight finisher went to high school and using the same 8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 scoring system came up with a World Championships state competition.

Callinan is the Cinnaminson girls coach, a three-time state champ at Sacred Heart High in Vineland and a two-time MAC steeplechase champion at Widener.

Here’s what he came up with:

Ten states scored at least 10 points at Worlds, but the top three were New Jersey with 27 points, California with 24 and Texas with 21.

We win.

Amazing.

Here’s where New Jersey got its 27 points:

8 points … Sydney McLaughlin, Union Catholic [1st in women’s 400-meter hurdles]
8 points … Athing Mu, Trenton [1st in women’s 800]
6 points … Josh Awotunde, Delsea [3rd in men’s shot put]
3 points … Keturah Orji, Mount Olive [6th in women’s triple jump]
1 point … Jessica Woodard, Cherokee [8th in women’s shot put]
1 point … Ajee Wilson, Neptune [8th in women’s 800]

And that total would likely have been higher if defending champion Nia Ali from Pleasantville hadn’t wiped out in the trials of the 100-meter hurdles. New Jersey also nearly scored in the javelin, where Curtis Thompson reached the finals and placed 11th, about 12 feet out of 8th place.

Incredibly, New Jersey would have placed 18th as a country, ahead of Norway, Nigeria, Switzerland, Greece, Peru, Portugal, Algeria, Finland, Venezuela, Barbados and dozens of others.

Great stuff from Cal!

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