The drive to compete is what compels athletes into stardom. While there are many levels of sports from little league to the professional leagues, nearly all pale in comparison to competing on an international level for some of these athletes. Many have tried and many have failed but all have kept their eyes on a single prize...winning a gold medal while representing their country on the world stage. For a duo of former Oklahoma Sooner Athletes this was the dream. However, for Mookie Salaam and Kevin Bookout, the road has come to an end.
Mookie Salaam has certainly left his mark on Oklahoma's Track and Field. He set the bar high and currently holds school records in not only the 100 with a time of 9.97 but also the 200 with a time of 20.05 while winning the NCAA Title in the 200 in 2011. On the other hand, many football fans will remember Salaam for the challenge sent out to Trey Franks who at the time was regarded as the fastest player on the Oklahoma Roster.
After the 2011 season, Salaam decided he would turn pro and sign with Adidas to begin training for the 2012 London Olympic Games. It was no secret that Salaam was and still is one of the top sprinters in the nation but that does not mean he is invincible. Due to injuring a hamstring, Salaam has announced that he will be pulling out of the U.S. Olympic Trials
Kevin Bookout is another name that Oklahoma Fans will remember from the basketball hardwood but he was a dual-sport star before coming to OU. Not only did Bookout excel on the court, he also had a natural talent in track and field. Several years ago, Bookout announced his intentions to begin training for the men's shot put. His first attempt at this U.S. Trials was marked at 19.06 meters. This attempt would be his best but it would take finishing in the top three to make the team and left him shy of that mark.