Unfortunately, USA Track and Field did not consider Justin Gatlin’s suggestion for settling the tie between Allyson Felix and Jeneba Tarmoh for the third and final Olympic spot in the women’s 100 meters.
“I’m voting for Jell-O wrestling match,” Gatlin said. “Red Jell-O. That’s my favorite.”
That certainly would have boosted ratings, but after debating the situation Saturday night and Sunday, USA Track and Field came up with another solution that is a confusing blend of democracy, athleticism and random luck. This is how it will work, and you better take notes because I’m only going over it once:
First, Felix and Tarmoh will be given the option of declining the spot on the team and becoming the alternate while the other runner takes the final spot. (Yeah, that’s likely.)
If neither runner declines the spot, each will be asked whether she wants the tiebreaker to be a coin flip or a runoff. And this is where it gets complicated.
If both agree on a runoff, there will be a runoff. If one says runoff and the other says coin flip, there will be a runoff. If both say coin flip, there will be a coin flip. If neither runner chooses a method, there will be a coin flip.
Got that? Good. Because now we have to discuss when this runoff or coin flip would happen. And the answer is: We don’t know, other than it has to be determined by the end of the trials next Sunday when the Olympic team is finalized. And given that both runners are entered in the 200, which has its final Saturday, it could take until then before the runners decide.
Oh, and one last thing. The winner of the runoff gets to host the World Series. (more…)