LINCOLN, Neb.—South Dakota senior Chris Nilsen broke the NCAA Indoor record for the pole vault with a clearance of 19 feet, 5 ½ inches, at the Nebraska Tune-Up Friday afternoon held inside the Bob Devaney Sports Center. Nilsen moves to third in the world this indoor season with his 5.93m performance behind Sweden’s Mondo Duplantis (6.18m) and fellow American Sam Kendricks (6.01m). It is also the 15th-best indoor mark in world history. Nilsen broke Duplantis’ record from 2019 by a centimeter. Duplantis turned professional following last year’s outdoor season and has already broke the world pole vault record in 2020. A three-time NCAA Champion hailing from Kansas City, Missouri, Nilsen broke the 19-foot barrier for the third time this indoor season on Friday. He initially took the NCAA lead with a clearance of 19-2 before going on to break the NCAA record.
The height is a four-and-a-half inch indoor best for Nilsen. His all-around personal best of 19 feet, 6 ¼ inches, came at the 2019 NCAA Outdoor Championships where he set the meet record. Nilsen has cleared 19 feet in the pole vault a total of 14 times in his career. Three of his four indoor 19-foot jumps have come at the Bob Devaney Sports Center.