BILLINGS — It’s hard to believe, but not so long ago Julius Mims would have thought his current obsession was terrifying.
“I really wasn’t going to do it because I thought it looked pretty scary at first,” Mims said. “But my friend in middle school got me into it, and I haven’t quit ever since.”
Mims looks as natural in a high jump pit now as he does on a basketball breakaway, and the two go hand in hand.
“I can contribute a lot of it to basketball,” Mims said of his high jump ability. “Getting my legs stronger and stuff like that.”
A stellar basketball season led right into track and field, where Mims set new personal records of 6 feet, 8 inches and 6-10 within the first two weeks.
“I was just jumping. I really didn’t think twice about it. When I got it, it was thrilling, it was awesome,” he said.
His 6-10 mark is second only to all-class record holder Trey Tintinger this year, who cleared 6-11 at a meet in California. The two are likely headed for another battle at the State AA meet, much like last year when Tintinger won his second title.
“When we jumped against each other, there was a lot of energy there with everybody watching us and just us two on the pit. I think we make each other better honestly,” Mims said.
Both are still just juniors, so we could see the record fall again before all is said and done. But whatever the number, Mims has his eyes set on one prize.
“It’s big. I want to win a state title,” Mims said.
He’s certainly not scared of the stage.