If you watch the video "Oldlegs", you can see the officials (and most of them seem to have been with the meet since it's inception, so you can interpret what that means about their physical and mental acuity, though given your monikor on this site, you may be one of them :) on the outside of the track observing .......... right, absolutely nothing, because all the action is taking place on the inside two lanes, without a curb, and with some extra track available inside the lane line. They should have been on the inside, and/or cones should have been placed there in the absence of a curb. The young man didn't "step out of his lane", he ran for at least 8 consecutive strides (and it's certainly more because he's already left of the line when the video view changes) inside the line because he knew bouncing outside at the point was going to be too taxing. He made a choice to cheat the spirit of the competition when he decided to drop inside on the beginning of the last lap (because he couldn't get around the 3rd place competitor at that point in the race) and then take unfair advantage by running inside the line that was being clearly protected by the runner in the white singlet. One of the pieces of high school sports that I appreciate and value most, and is often missing at the next levels of sport, is the combining of great competition with great sportsmanship. There's no money, no sponsors, and no shoe contracts on the line when these young people race, and there should be honesty, integrity, and fair application of the rules, both in the letter and the spirit of the law. You think Providence is getting a gem, I think they may be getting a chump. It's probably not a set condition in this young man, but without lessons and consequences for inappropriate behavior, he's likely to become part of the entitled generation that think it's only wrong if you get caught.
As the late Jackson Sholz comments through his main character in his great short story, "The Winning Bug", about Sax Demming after observing him try to run a teammate off the track in practice, "Sax Demming's problem was not a common one among athletes, but every coach runs up against it now and then. For convenience I'll call it the "winning bug". By that I mean that whenever an athlete is bitten by this bug, the idea uppermost in his mind is to win, regardless of all consequences. He attaches so much importance to victory that everything else dwindles to nothing by comparison. It doesn't necessarily indicate a crooked streak in a man's character, because in every other way he may be square shooting and fine, except that under the excitement of competition he is not really himself. But, if such a thing is allowed to run, it may become such a fixture in a person's character that it pokes its head up in some of the problems of everyday life..........I don't often preach on the subject of sportsmanship, because it's not becoming for a (college) coach to shout about morals, ethics, and such things. He's paid to deliver the goods, not talk about them, so the more he concentrates on the matter in hand the fatter and more regular will be his paycheck. He's also paid to win, but at the same time there are various ways of winning, and I find that my men will win more regularly if they are right mentally, before and after a race. It pays in the long run to keep the minds of the boys clean and square. I teach my boys to give their last breath and to fight to the last inch, but to fight fair all the way. In that way victories mean a lot more, and defeats hurt a lot less. If a man runs the best race that's in him and loses, he hasn't much to regret, but if he runs a crooked race and wins, well ----- think it over. If they lose they learn to grin and keep their mouths shut. No excuses, you understand."
Read the rest of the story (search around and you can find it online) to see how Sax turns out. I hope Marcus Kemp learns the same lessons from the mature, thoughtful adults in his life since the "oldlegs" officials at Arcadia were apparently too pre-occupied with lanes 7 and 8 to help out that process and do their job at a key point in the race.