High School Sports

Season Interrupted: Namir Hemphill has one more hurdle to clear


Throughout the spring, The Times will interview high school seniors whose athletic careers were cut short by the coronavirus outbreak.

Name: Namir Hemphill

School: Upland

Sport: Track and field, hurdles, triple jump


Key stats: Was No. 1 triple jumper in the state this year after setting a personal-best of 49 feet, 11 inches; third in state in 300 hurdles in ’19

Fall plans: Will attend Northern Colorado

On the sudden end to the season:
“It was a hard thing for me to adjust to, but we all have to move on in life. I have a good support system.”


On his athleticism:
“I’ve always noticed I’ve been really athletic. I remember in third grade I used to go into the school yard and race all the sixth and seventh graders. I used to beat them. I’ve always been fast and be able to jump.”

On how he stays in shape:
“We have been blessed to have a big backyard. I have two sets of hurdles. I can do my triple jump drills in the backyard.”

On coming with an inch of 50 feet in the triple jump:
“This was my year. I have been working hard focusing on my technique. I’ve always been strong, but my technique hasn’t been. I had some good advice. One of my coaches told me I was going for 52 feet this year. I was looking to take down the Arcadia Invitational record.”

For the Temecula Great Oak track standout, life is more a marathon than a sprint: ‘I’m gardening. It’s like running. In time things will come.’

Where he sees himself in 10 years:
“I’ll be pro stage.”

What he misses the most:
“I love to compete. I can’t compete on weekends and test my limits.”

Video interviews of each athlete can be found at

Go beyond the scoreboard

Get the latest on L.A.'s teams in the daily Sports Report newsletter.

You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.