Meredith Roberts contributed to this report.
Rasmus Skjaerpe has verbally committed to a scholarship at the University of Arizona.
Skjaerpe is a Norwegian National team member who swims with Tampa Bay Aquatics. At last year’s highly competitive 1A state meet (think Bolles, Pine Crest, and American Heritage), he represented Tampa Preparatory School and won the 200 freestyle with a time of 138.20. He went on to touch second with a 49.0 in the 100 fly.
Skjaerpe, who considers himself to be more of a middle distance swimmer, looks forward to contributing to the Wildcats’ 3rd-place team from last year’s NCAA Championship meet in a variety of different events. His 2012-2013 season produced a 1:47.0 in the 200 backstroke and a 1″46.5 in the 200 fly at Junior Nationals.
Skjaerpe says that a combination of factors make him feel ready to commit: Head Coach Eric Hansen and Associate Head Coach Rick Demont are enthusiastic, and the program itself sports a solid track record of success. The men finished third at NCAAs, and the club overall had three swimmers (Clark Burckle, Alyssa Anderson, and Matt Grevers) at the London Olympic Games. The school’s beautiful outdoor pool and warm weather of Tuscon made it easy for Skjaerpe, who lives and trains in sunny Florida, to see himself there.
If Skjaerpe’s size (he’s 6’2, 205 pounds), versatility in the pool, and nonstop work ethic translates, he will continue to improve and have an immediate impact in the Pac-12.