2012 Men’s College Swimming Preview: #7 USC Will Look To Highly Ranked Freshman Class For Support

A young team with talented upperclassmen and lots of fresh faces makes the 2012-2013 outlook very promising for Southern California.

Key Additions: Ted Singley (distance), Jeffrey Swanston (back), Maclin Davis (fly/free), Brock Redondo (Army Transfer, distance), Gottfried Eisenberger (fly), Dakota Hodgson (Auburn transfer, fly), Morten Klarskov (Breast), Fred Abramyan (sprint)

Key Losses: Jeffrey Daniels (1 NCAA relay), Julian Bonse (17 conference points), Will Orlady (3 conference points)

2012 Recap: USC ended up with a disappointing 7th place finish at NCAAs, plagued by a fluke DQ in the 800 free relay for swimming across the lane prior to the end of the relay which cost them 32 points. In spite of that, they still had a fairly successful meet highlighted by their sprint free relays and several individual second place finishes.

Free Relays: The 2free relay loses senior Jeff Daniels, but returns the other three led by school record holder and rising junior Vladimir Morozov, who took 2nd in the individual event at 2012 NCAAs. The 400 was the Trojans’ strongest last year, taking 4th at NCAAs with a 2:50.56. That relay too will smart from the loss of Daniels, but both will be aided by the addition of top recruit Fred Abramyan, who is sub-45 in the 100 and has split sub-20 in the 50.

Sprinters: Losing Daniels will hurt them on the relays, but they have lots of young sprinter talent to make do with. Morozov offers plenty of high-end talent there. The key will be finding the depth to field strong relays, and they’ll look to Maclin Davis and others to do so. Two returners, Morozov and Dimitri Coupalev both scored at NCAAs last year in the 100 free.

200 Free: The Trojans really excel here as well, with most of their top-end talent coming over from the distance free group. School record holder Dmitri Colupaev’s 1:32.9 took second place last year, and rising sophomore Christian Quintero won the consol heat with a 1:34. USC had five underclassmen in the top 25 at NCAAs, with Chad Bobrosky as first alternate. Their depth in this event bodes well for relays next year, hoping they avoid the DQ that knocked them out at 2012 NCAAs.

D-Group: Led by rising sophomore Cristian Quintero, whose 4:13.0 was good for second place at NCAAs last year, USC has major point-scoring ability in the distance events. Chad Babrosky had a breakout freshman year, going a 4:17 to take 11th at NCAAs. He’ll definitely be in the hunt for an A-final swim next year. In the mile, Quintero was 9th in 14:45, and both these men will lead a strong distance corps supported by incoming freshman Ted Singley and transfer Brock Redondo next year.

IM: Rising senior Alex Lendrum and junior Dimitri Colupaev will lead a strong group of sprint IMers. Both have sub-145 200s, but were slightly off at 2012 NCs, with Lendrum taking 14th and school-record holder Colupaev failing to earn a second swim. They’ll be hungry for and certainly capable of more this year. No trojans competed in the 400 IM at NCAAs last year.

Medley Relays: Though not as strong as their freestyles, the medley relays have a lot to offer and will return all of their swimmers in addition to adding top high school butterflyer Maclin Davis. Morozov provides a huge anchor leg, but none of the 100 strokers is in that top echelon, and all missed out on scoring in the individual 100s last year.

Fly: Chase Bloch has been 46 before, but was a bit off at NCAAs last year as well, finishing 31st. Next year, they’ll look to incoming freshman and 100 fly National High School Record HolderMaclin Davis to step up and score some big points here. Auburn transfer Dakota Hodgson will be a welcome addition in the 200.

Breast: Sergio Lujan Rivera is their current breaststroker and has been 53.78 before. After a strong freshman year, he’s certainly well-poised to improve and continue to make an impact not only on relays but individually as well. He’ll be joined by incoming freshman Morten Klarskov, Denmark’s top breaststroker.

Back: At 46/140, Alex Lendrum leads a strong group of backstrokers that didn’t manage to score in the 100 at NCAAs last year. Lendrum was 6th in the 200 with a 142, and has demonstrated that he’s capable of going even faster. USC has the depth and talent in the backstroke and will look to incoming freshman Canadian Jeffrey Swanston to add support to this group.

2012-2013 Outlook: The Trojans are well-poised to break back into the top 5 next year. With an incoming class that will fill relay gaps and add depth throughout, USC is ready to top their performance from last year and emerge as a top threat in the NCAA. They’re a young team, which bodes well for them because as the swimmers gain more experience they’ll learn to manage better the conference meet/NCAA double and post top times at both.

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