Ole Miss sprinter McKenzie Long dedicates the NCAA triple win to her late mom, Tara Jones

McKenzie Long talked about playing in Olympics two months before Tara left the world and now Long thrives to fulfill that words with her mother.


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McKenzie Long, Ole Miss sprinter, made history by triumphing in three titles in the 2024 NCAA Outdoor Championships, which she said was the dream of her late mom, Tara Jones. Sadly, the sprinter lost her mom earlier this season in February.

Tara Jones, McKenzie Long’s mom, passed away at the age of 45 due to a heart attack in February 2024, the time when Long was ready to play for the national team.

During her NCAA race, the sprinter mentioned that seeing the blocks made her calm, as she felt like her mom was with her.

She dedicated this match to her mom, as her captions said, “For you mom….

The match eventually led Long to become the first sprinter from Ole Miss to win the event in a 100-meter dash. She finished it in 10.82 seconds and 200 meters in 21.83 seconds.

She and her team, Akilah Lewis, Gabrielle Matthews, and Jahniya Bowers, also brought Ole Miss another first-ever NCAA Outdoor relay title by finishing the 400-meter relay hurdle in 42.34 seconds.

Tara Jones, Mckenzie Long’s mother, was a psychiatric travel nurse and a mother of five

McKenzie Long, 23, was born on July 11, 2000, to her parents, mother Tara Jones and father, Micheal Long, who followed Christianity and instilled the same in their children.

However, McKenzie Long’s parent’s relationship did not last long as they divorced because of circumstances.

After the separation, it seems her mom, Tara, met her second husband, KC Jones, whom she married on November 9, 2010, and was with him till her last breath.

Tara Jones was a psychiatric travel nurse working in Hawaii and a podcaster who ran her own channel, Cup of Jones podcast, along with her second husband.

The podcast apparently ran for two seasons, with the second starting in October 2019.

Meanwhile, KC Jones was 6 years younger than Tara and had a history of marriage and divorce before tying the knot with Tara.

Although Tara’s distinct number of children from her first and second husband remained unclear, she had five children in total, as mentioned in her podcast description.

However, it still needs confirmation from Long, who never seems to mention her siblings.

On the other hand, her biological father Micheal is currently running a GoFundMe page to support the expense of rooting Long during her 2024 Olympics in Paris, along with Jennifer Long, who supposedly seems to be her sister, but it is not confirmed yet.

Additional Information

  • From Tara’s social media, it appears that she tried to divorce KC Jones in 2019 after discovering his affair with Em, but they tackled the situation and forgave KC as a chance for her family.
  • McKenzie Long started her track career in middle school and continued to high school in Columbus, Ohio. There, she holds records in the 60m, 100m, and 200m dashes.
  • Long began her collegiate track career at North Carolina State University before graduating and transferring to the University of Mississippi (Ole Miss) to earn a Master’s degree in criminal justice.
  • McKenzie Long underwent hip surgery due to an injury, so she did not play in the 2021-22 season.
Muskan Ghimire
Muskan Ghimire
Muskan Ghimire is an enthusiastic writer, editor, and blogger who likes to share updates on recent political, sports, and entertainment news. She has the writing and editing experience of more than two years. Over this time, she significantly enhanced her writing skills, crafting clear and engaging content. She has also accumulated in-depth knowledge in various niches, making her subject matter expert capable of editing with precision. With time, she has achieved SEO mastery, which lets her optimize content for search engines, improving visibility and ranking. Meanwhile, she has honed her communication skills, thanks to the continuous interactions with writers, bloggers, and show biz professionals, which led to new opportunities and collaborations.


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