2017 M. NCAA 200 Breast Preview: Licon Might Be Alone Under 1:50



  • NCAA record: 1:48.12 Will Licon (Texas) 3-26-2016
  • American record: 1:48.12 Will Licon (Texas) 3-26-2016
  • U.S. Open record: 1:48.12 Will Licon (Texas) 3-26-2016
  • 2016 NCAA Champion: Will Licon (Texas) – 1:48.12

There are several men who have been jostling to lead the Americans internationally in breaststroke– Texas’s Will Licon, however, is the only one among them who will be racing this weekend in Indianapolis. All of the rest have either recently graduated college, or have been swimming Division III. That leaves Licon as the heavy favorite to win his second-straight NCAA title here, as no other swimmer has been remotely close to breaking 1:50, while Licon looks well on his way to drop a 1:47 or better.

This is an event dominated by upperclassmen– seniors hold five of the top six seeds, and the first underclassmen isn’t until you get to #12 Jacob Montague, a freshman from Michigan. Four of the top ten are returners from last year’s A final, not including Licon, who will fight for spots behind him this weekend. Those four are Alabama’s Anton McKee (#2 1:52.22), Virginia Tech’s Brandon Fiala (#3 1:52.39), Mizzou’s Fabian Schwingenschlogl (#5 1:52.61) and Louisville’s Carlos Claverie (#10 1:53.19). All four of them come in seeded faster than they were last season.

South Carolina’s Nils Wich-Glasen may seem like a newcomer– he didn’t even place top 16 at NCAAs last year. When reading between the lines, though, (or just looking at the bottom of the results page), Wich-Glasen was actually DQ’d– his time of 1:53.91 in last year’s prelims would’ve put him in the A final had he not been DQ’d. He’s the #4 seed this season with a 1:52.41, over 1.5 seconds faster than he came in to the meet last year. Considering the recent success of South Carolina’s basketball team, there’s no reason why he wouldn’t be swimming with a chip on his shoulder. Both the Gamecocks basketball team and Wich-Glasen will be looking to make the Elite Eight (or A final) this week.

Steven Stumph, a USC senior, won his third-straight Pac-12 title in the 200 breast three weeks ago, and he comes in as the #6 seed with a 1:52.82. Stumph was 10th in prelims last year, then won the B final. Like most of the top seeds this year, he comes in with a faster seed time than in 2016. Georgia Tech’s Moises Loschi was the ACC runner-up, sandwiched between Fiala and Claverie. His 1:53.08 has him seeded 8th, in between two Big Ten studs. #7 is Purdue’s Marat Amaltdinov (1:52.89) and #9 is Michigan’s Chris Klein (1:53.14). Neither Amaltdinov nor Klein swam any individual races last year, and this could be their chance to make an A final.


1 Will Licon Texas 1:49.89 1:48.12
2 Fabian Schwingenschlogl Mizzou 1:52.61 1:51.84
3 Anton McKee Alabama 1:52.22 1:51.59
4 Brandon Fiala Virginia Tech 1:52.39 1:52.39
5 Carlos Claverie Louisville 1:53.19 1:53.19
6 Nils Wich-Glasen South Carolina 1:52.41 1:52.41
7 Steven Stumph USC 1:52.82 1:52.50
8 Chris Klein Michigan 1:53.14 1:53.14

Dark horse: #16 Alex Evdomikov (Cornell). The junior made the B-final last year, and he comes in as one of the slew of 1:53’s this year.

In This Story

Leave a Reply

Notify of
newest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
4 years ago

Licon will finish the race, get out, drive to panda, get some orange chicken, drive back, and watch the same race from the stands… while enjoying his delicious orange chicken

Reply to  JTspot
4 years ago

So true, however Schooling will have to spoon-feed him because Will’s arms will be numb due to severe elbow squeezing in on recovery (see picture).

Reply to  PsychoDad
4 years ago

This one time Psychodad trained a Junior Olympic 9th place finisher…

Reply to  H20pinion
4 years ago

Good one. Nice try. But, nah, all I want is to educate general population on fine points of Eddie’s breaststroke. I am putting effort here and you are not appreciate that. My feelings are hurt.

Reply to  JTspot
4 years ago

This is my favorite comment ever

Reply to  Goat
4 years ago

Obviously written by one of the Longhorn fans who saw an Instagram post by Schooling and Licon today. Good one though.

Reply to  JTspot
4 years ago

People may be joking here, but I did see him at PF Changs today

Reply to  JTspot
4 years ago

Nothing from Panda Express is delicious. This is fake news!

4 years ago

Will Licon won the 200 his sophomore year, too. He’s going for a three-peat.

4 years ago

No Amaltdinov? Leaving the Big ten champion out of the mix seems like an interesting decision here.

About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

Read More »