Former Western Kentucky University Gavin Smellie is no longer on the bubble.
He’s in the Olympics.
Smellie was named to the Canadian Olympic track and field squad in the 4-by-100-meter relay over the weekend.
However, it was not certain at that time that Canada would be among the 16 relay teams to qualify for the Summer Olympic Games in London.
Word came Tuesday, though, that Canada will run as the No. 11 seed.
Smellie is the second Hilltopper to qualify for the London Olympics.
Claire Donahue qualified for the U.S. Swim Team last week, placing second in the 100-meter butterfly.
The Canadian track relay team qualified with a two-race average time of 38.64 seconds. Jamaica qualified with the fastest time of 37.56.
A native of Etobicoke, Ontario, Smellie twice earned All-America honors during his career on the Hill from 2006-10. He was part of the 2008 All-American 4-by-400-meter relay team at the 2008 NCAA Indoor championships, and won individual All-America recognition in the 200 meters at the 2009 Outdoor championships. He was also the 2009 Mideast Regional champion in the 200.
Smellie was named all-Sun Belt Conference multiple times during his career, and was selected as the Most Outstanding Performer at both the 2008 SBC Indoor Championships and 2009 Outdoors.
Among his international competition, Smellie ran in the 2009 World Championships in Berlin and finished sixth in the 200 at the 25th Summer Universiade in Belgrade, Serbia.
Okoro wins title in Africa
Former University of Louisville and Russell High School standout Chinwe Okoro won the women’s discus competition last weekend in the 18th African Senior Athletic Championships at Porto-Novo, Benin Republic.
Representing Nigeria, Okoro moved from fourth place to third by reaching 178 feet, 11 inches on her fourth attempt. She won on her sixth and final throw, 185-8.
Okoro also placed second in the shot put with a distance of 53-2 1/4.
In June of 2011, Okoro won the shot put at the 65th All Nigeria/Cross River State Athletics Championships.
Of Nigerian descent, Okoro is a native of Darien, Ill., and a three-time national All-Academic Team honoree who graduated with a 3.88 grade-point average in biology. Recently, she was named a 2011-12 Big East Conference Scholar-Athlete Sports Excellence Award winner.
Okoro helped U of L to a fifth straight Big East Conference outdoor title, winning her first league title in the shot put. She graduated as a three-time outdoor All-American.
Meanwhile, former Card and two-time NCAA champion Matt Hughes placed second in the 3,000-meter steeplechase at last weekend’s Canadian Olympic Trials, clocked in 8:47.65. And current U of L team member Michelle Theophille placed second in the women’s high jump by clearing 6 feet.
Neither performance Hughes nor Theophille met the Olympic standard, though.