EUGENE, OR — University at Buffalo high jumper and Byron-Bergen graduate Brandon Burke earned first-team All-American honors last week as he finished tied for eighth at the NCAA Championships at Hayward Field on the campus of the University of Oregon.
Burke tied his personal best and school record set in 2019 with a jump of 2.20m. He opened competition on Friday clearing the first height of 2.10m (6-10.75) and then on his first attempt he cleared the second height of 2.15m (7-0.5).
After missing his first jump at 2.20m (7-2.5), Burke then cleared the height, one of 12 individuals to move on in the competition. He came close at 2.23m (7-3.75), but ultimately only four cleared that height.
LSU’s JuVaughn Harrison won the national championship, clearing a height of 2.33m (7-7.75).
This is the second All-American honor for Burke this season as he also earned All-American status at the NCAA Indoor Championships.
Burke entered the championship meet after setting a facility record two weeks earlier in the NCAA East Preliminary with a jump of 2.19m, one of three competitors in the contest to hit all their jumps without a miss.
In all 24 individuals competed in the high jump at the championships last week as 12 each qualified from the East and West preliminaries, respectively. Of the 24 competitors, all but five hit the height of 2.19m to qualify for Eugene, while the other five got in at the height of 2.19m.
Buffalo has had success in Eugene over the last few years. In the last NCAA Championships, which occurred in 2019, Leon Atkins earned second-team All-American honors.
UB’s biggest splash at the NCAA Outdoor Championships came in 2015 when Jonathan Jones claimed the national championship in the shot put.
Burke was awarded All-American honors in March as the senior placed seventh in a very competitive field of 16 high jumpers from top programs across the country at the Indoor NCAA Championships.
Burke, the 2021 Mid-American Conference High Jump Champion and MAC Co-Men’s Field Athlete of the Year, jumped a height of 2.18-meters (7’-01.75”) at the 2021 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships.
He was the first Bull to compete in the high jump at the NCAA Indoor Championships. The only other Bull to compete in the high jump was UB’s first All-American in Shelly Hamilton at the 1998 NCAA Outdoor Championships.
While at Byron-Bergen, Burke was one of the most decorated track and field athletes in Bees history.
A four-time Genesee Region League all-star and two-time GR Player of the Year, he finished his career holding three school records (pentathlon, high jump and triple jump), while he also holds the Section V Class CC high jump record.
As a senior, Burke would go on to capture the New York State high jump title, a day after he took second in both the long jump and triple at the state meet.
For his career Burke was a seven-time GR champion and a four-time sectional champion, while he also took eighth at the New Balance Nationals outdoor meet in the high jump, seventh at the New Balance indoor meet in the high jump, sixth at the 2017 Penn Relays
Burke is on pace for a double-major in aerospace and mechanical engineering with a minor in robotics.
At UB, Burke has posted career bests of 2.20 meters (7-2.5) in the high jump and 14.22 (46-8) in the triple jump.