Charles Anumnu prepares for outdoor debut at Victor Lopez Classic

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Despite being on the road this weekend, Charles Anumnu feels he still has the home advantage at the upcoming Victor Lopez Classic.

The meet, which begins on March 24, takes place at Rice, less than an hour northeast from the senior sprinter’s hometown of Stafford, Texas.

“Rice recruited me and my brother, they really wanted us to come there,” Anumnu said. “We used to run Rice relays in high school, so hopefully I’ll see a lot of familiar faces and show them what I’ve been working on up here.”

Though the season has just begun, the Longhorns already have large expectations placed upon themselves. The Texas men’s team is ranked No. 7 in the nation while the women’s team is ranked No. 8.

Anumnu has also set high standards for himself. Despite being a member of the 4x100-meter relay team that placed ninth at the NCAA Championships and earned All-American status last season, the athlete is hoping for more this year.

“Of course (I want to) qualify for the national relays,” Anumnu said. “But I kind of want to qualify for nationals in an individual event, whether that be the 100 (meters) or the 200 (meters).”

Anumnu will happily make his outdoor season debut in the 200-meter dash at the meet. He said he enjoys this time of year much more than the indoor season.

“I don’t know, it’s just something about running inside on those small tracks. I don’t like it,” Anumnu said. “I never really excelled at it like I do outdoors.”