By Nick Talbot
Killeen Daily Herald
SALADO - It took a couple of weeks, but Robert Emrick stopped getting dizzy.
Two years later, he had just gotten good.
"I have been (throwing the hammer) three of four years now. I went to the Junior Olympic and actually got fifth last year," the recent Salado graduate said. "It takes a lot more coordination. In the discus you spin one time. In the hammer you spin four times ... and you are going a lot faster.
"Whenever you first start, you stop and get motion sickness. But, after two weeks I got used to it."
Emrick signed to throw the hammer, discus and shot put for Tarleton State at a signing ceremony Tuesday at Salado that also saw sprinter Peyton Best sign with the Texan track program.
"Once I met the coaches I knew that is kind of where I wanted to be," Best said. "They liked me and I liked them. I just want to bring my work ethic and be a leader like I was here."
Best was a part of the Salado 400-meter relay that despite a misstep on the final handoff between finished fourth in a school-record time of 41.97 seconds, eclipsing the previous mark of 42.57.
He expects to run in the 400-meter dash and the sprint relays, compete in the long jump - where he also owns the school record - and maybe even throw the javelin for Tarleton State.
"I am OK at (throwing the javelin), but with a little more work I think I can be pretty good," Best said.
And even though the Daily Herald All-Area wide receiver could compete in as many as five or six events for the Texans, he won't be a decathlete anytime soon.
"If I could pole vault and hurdle I could do it, but those are two major things," Best said. "Pole vault would take a couple of years."
Emrick capped his career with a throw of 54-feet, 9½ inches on his final attempt to win bronze in the 3A boys shot put at the UIL State Track and Field meet at Mike A. Myers Stadium in May, a feat that drew attention from college coaches like Angelo State.
Both he and Best felt Tarleton was a better fit for the Salado track duo.
"A lot of my friends and family were questioning where I was going and I was like 'I am still waiting, still waiting,'" Best said. "Then finally my prayers got answered."