Penn Relays executive director Dave Johnson dipped into the massive track vault in his mind and pulled out a handful of treasures:
1. First time at Franklin Field, 1968. Standing along the rail watching the 4-mile relay with Villanova winning. The biggest meet I'd been to was the Chichester Relays with maybe 25 teams and a handful of spectators. But walking into Franklin Field, I realized track had its own great stadiums with enormous crowds.
2. Also 1968, walking out a little early with my coach to beat the traffic. We heard a big roar, but got home too late to watch the everning news, and in the days before late-night news, I didn't know I'd missed Villanova runner Larry James' 43.9 until reading it in the Sunday Bulletin.
3. 1979, Renaldo Nehemiah's year. The Maryland star came from behind to win the shuttle hurdles, then came from 12 meters behind and in an outer lane to beat LSU in the 4x200. And then he caught Tennessee and Villanova in an amazing come-from-behind anchor in the 4x400.
4. The 2007 high school boys' 4x400 championship. It was a terrific four-team race that went back and forth, with Long Beach Poly finally winning. I've never heard such an extended high-decibel roar from any crowd. The PA announcer couldn't be heard from the middle of the first turn of the first leg until well after the race had finished.