- Associated Press - Thursday, April 20, 2017

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (AP) - The running, vaulting, jumping and throwing will continue at Eastern Illinois University through 2022.

The Illinois High School Association board of directors approved a recommendation this week to extend the Eastern Illinois hosting contract for the IHSA Track & Field State Final at O’Brien Stadium .

The 5-year extension is for both boys’ and girls’ meets.

Tom Michael is Eastern Illinois’ athletic director. He says the IHSA track championship has been “a vital part of the community” for decades. He says it’s a great way to introduce the Charleston-based school to thousands of visitors.

A 1972 conflict moved the boys’ meet to O’Brien from the University of Illinois. Urbana reclaimed it in 1973, but O’Brien has hosted since 1974. Girls have competed at O’Brien since their first meet in 1973.

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