Walking onto the University of Florida campus his freshman year, Eddie Lovett didn’t see track and field as his future.
Lovett was thrilled to run track, but his main focus was football. Now three years later as three years later as a senior, he’s a four-time decorated Southeastern Conference champion.
The reality is before Lovett came to UF he played football with former Gator defensive back Matt Elam in high school, which made his focus on another sport apart from his true diversion.
“When I first got here, I was excited to run track, but I wanted to play football,” Lovett said. “ I even talked to Mouse (coach Mike Holloway) about it and he gave me his words and I thought about it, but once the [track] season started and after SEC’s, it was just kind of like, let me see where this goes.”
The senior hurdler from West Palm Beach, Fla., accrued a numerous amount of accolades throughout his collegiate career.
From being the UF record-holder in the 60-meter hurdles and 55-meter hurdles with times of 7.50 and 7.10, Lovett is the second UF athlete to attempt a four-peat.
His pure intention was not to only be a hurdler, but to achieve greatness on and off the track.
“I pretty much give credit to a lot of my ability to a higher power, to God, and just what I believe his purpose is for me and using the abilities I have,” Lovett said. “Before I get on the blocks, I basically say God lead my steps, I speak to my dad, I say a prayer to him and that’s about it, and just get ready for the race and however it happens, it happens.”
Purpose is Lovett’s biggest motivation, and since being an indoor SEC champion from his freshman year, he follows the same principles.
The Palm Beach Lakes High alum said being consistent and having a gradual build gets him to that point in the season when it’s time to turn the jets on, he makes it happen.
His instructor since 2011 has been Mike Holloway. Holloway has coached Lovett throughout his whole tenure at UF.
Witnessing the maturation process of one of his finest athletes, Holloway knows Lovett as well as anybody else.
“If you look at Eddie’s performances over his career here, he’s done a wonderful job of understanding that it’s not about being the best in the country at a meet, it’s about being the best guy in the country at the national championships.”
Aiming to be the best in the country at all times will assist Lovett in seeking to complete his four-peat as a UF track star.