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Sunday, November 28, 2021

A dislocated arm and torn labrum knocked Marquis Dendy out of competition last year, and the junior underwent surgery in September 2013.

But after months of recovery, Dendy is back and will make his season debut this weekend when the UF track and field team travels to Fayetteville, Ark., for the Razorback Invitational.

“I leave my past behind me, and that is one thing my dad always tells me to do,” Dendy said. “Right now, I have no marks and no stats for this year, so what I have to (do) is earn all that stuff back.”

Dendy hopes this is the start of another decorated season to add to a career full of honors.

Last year, he earned the NCAA title in the long jump, the 2013 Southeastern Conference Men’s Field Athlete of the Year award and the USTFCCCA South Region’s Men’s Field Athlete of the Year award.

Dendy considers the indoor season as only a warm-up for outdoor.

This first meet of the season will help prepare him for the SEC Indoor Championships and carry him to the NCAA Indoor Championships in March.

Throughout weekly practices leading up to the weekend meet, Dendy has organized himself differently in training for meets.

“I’ve been doing stuff like landing on a mat or trying to land in a foam pit in the O’Dome,” Dendy said. “Getting my sprint speed, running the 60(m) and doing a lot of sprints and taking care of my body. I ran myself into shape a lot and taking care of legs, and other than my arm, my body feels 110 percent.”

After leaping to a world-leading long jump at last springs’ SEC Indoor Championships in Fayetteville, Dendy wants to live up to coach Mike Holloway’s high expectations for him.

“I don’t shy from any type of expectations,” Dendy said.

“Can’t is not in my vocabulary, when he says I need these points, I need you to do this for me I’m going to do it.”

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