Spain Park High School alum Daniel Nixon made his college track and field debut at the Birmingham CrossPlex on Friday, Jan. 13. He placed second in the men's 600 meters.
Daniel Nixon came home to make his college track and field debut.
A 2016 graduate of Spain Park High School, Nixon ran his first race as a Mississippi State Bulldog on Friday, Jan. 13, at the UAB Blazer Invite. The meet was held at the Birmingham CrossPlex.
“I had a whole bunch of friends and family come out,” Nixon said. “It felt good being back here.”
His performance suggested he felt comfortable with his surroundings. Nixon placed second overall in the men’s 600 meters with a time of 1 minute, 19.96 seconds. After his race, he said his goal had been to break 1:20.
“To be able to do that right now this early in the season, I’m happy,” Nixon said.
Traditionally, the Jaguar alum has competed well on his home indoor track. He won the Class 7A state championship in the 800 meters on it last February. His time of 1:55.51 set a new state meet record.
“It felt really good to be back on it and race,” he said, “especially now in maroon and white.”
Nixon, a former All-American, left Spain Park as one of the most accomplished athletes in school history. In total, he won three state individual titles -- all in the 800 -- and became the first Jag to earn a spot at the prestigious Brooks PR Invitational. His personal-best 800 time of 1:51.64 was the fastest ever recorded by an Alabama high schooler.
Last April, Nixon concluded an extensive recruiting process when he signed with Mississippi State. Nine months after inking his commitment, he said he made a “great” decision in electing to join the Bulldog program.
“It was different at first, but when you buy into a program, you have to buy into it fully, and I bought into it fully,” Nixon said. “I’m just enjoying every moment of it, in the classroom and on the track and outside of both, so I’m just taking it day by day.”