2018 ACC Men’s Wrap Up: Freshmen Impact, DeSorbo, and Wolfpack Dominance

by Robert Gibbs 30

February 25th, 2018 News

2018 ACC MEN’S CHAMPIONSHIPS

  • When: Wednesday, February 21st to Saturday, February 24th | Prelims 10:00am | Finals 6:00pm
  • Where: Greensboro Aquatics Center, Greensboro, NC (Eastern Time Zone)
  • Defending Champion: NC State Wolfpack
  • Psych Sheet: here
  • Live Results: here
  • Championship Central: here

The 2018 ACC men’s championships are in the books.  The NC State Wolfpack waltzed away with their fourth-consecutive victory, winning 10 of 13 individual swimming events, and all except one relay.  The Louisville Cardinals have now finished 2nd each of the four years they’ve been competed in the ACC since coming over from the now-defunct Big East conference in 2014.  Here’s just a few of the biggest storylines from this year’s championships.  Feel free to leave your own observations in the comments below.

The Kids Are Alright

In our fan guide, we mentioned that several teams had taken some big hits from graduating seniors and were in the process of rebuilding or reloading.  Well, the freshmen came through.  Across the board, freshmen scored more points than any class besides juniors.  Over a quarter of the men who scored 70 or more points were freshmen: Nicolas Albiero (Louisville), Robby Giller (Virginia), Giovanni Izzo (NC State), Eric Knowles (NC State) and Evgenii Somov (Louisville).  In fact, the only three individual swimming events that NC State did not win were won by freshmen (Albiero in the 200 fly and Somov in the breaststroke events).  Additionally, Notre Dame freshman Zach Yeadon turned in a very strong 2nd place finish in the 1650.  The influx of young talent should keep this increasingly-competitive conference making an impact on the national stage.

The DeSorbo Effect

This was the first year that former NC State assistant coach Todd DeSorbo helmed the Virginia Cavaliers, and there’s been a lot of hype about DeSorbo and the impact he could have on a program like Virginia’s.  It was even easier to be bullish on UVA men’s team after their women’s team exceeded expectations and grabbed a conference championship the previous week.  Still, the Virginia women had a stronger recent track record of success, so we tried to temper our expectations for the Virginia men this week.  Apparently that caution was unnecessary.  The Cavalier men came out swinging with a 3rd place finish in the 200 medley relay Wednesday, continued to put up very solid performances over the course of the week, and ultimately outscored projections by about 150 points.  DeSorbo and staff appear to have brought a certain energy to the team that’s probably best encapsulated in this video of sophomore Ted Schubert time trialing the 400 IM Friday night.  UVA consistently ranks among the top five public universities in the United States, and a top-notch program here should help keep the considerable talent in the mid-Atlantic region on the East Coast for college.

NC State Doesn’t Miss a Beat

This does not appear to be a case of Virginia’s gain being NC State’s loss.  In terms of performance, the Wolfpack didn’t miss DeSorbo at all, as they smashed their way into another conference championship, breaking a whole host of conference records, and even one American Record, in the process.  Ryan Held and Anton Ipsen each won three events, with Held being named Swimmer of the Meet, Coleman Stewart was the (unofficial) breakout star of the meet, and Justin Ress dropped a sub-41 split at the end of the week on that record-setting 400 free relay.  This is a team that could be scary good next month, and if either California or Texas fails to come in firing on all cylinders, NC State could be the first team in five years besides those two to earn a top two finish.

Final Scores

1. NC State – 1457
2. Louisville – 1170.5
3. Virginia – 983.5
4. Notre Dame – 941
5. Florida State – 828.5
6. VA Tech – 688.5
7. Duke -621
8. UNC – 568
9. Georgia Tech – 504
10. Pitt – 324
11. Boston College – 137
12. University of Miami (Florida) – 94

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Al Albertson
3 years ago

I’m still baffled by all the DeSorbo fuss. First year head coach. Unproven. Lots of hype. Show me more.

samuel huntington
Reply to  Al Albertson
3 years ago

he is a good coach. But UVA the past two weeks also shows that Augie was a pretty good recruiter but a terrible coach. all in all, it’s good to see UVA rebounding.

Al Albertson
Reply to  samuel huntington
3 years ago

And Sammy.

Aquaman
Reply to  samuel huntington
3 years ago

Speaking of Augie, how did U of A do versus expectations?

JP input is too short
Reply to  Aquaman
3 years ago

They don’t have much in the way of expectations after last year… let’s see in a week.

UVA Fan
Reply to  Al Albertson
3 years ago

He’s signed some top recruits. They believe all the fuss. Go Hoos!

Pvdh
Reply to  Al Albertson
3 years ago

Perhaps open your eyes?

wahoooooowa
3 years ago

lol in the video of ted schubert’s 4 IM, you can see some kid on the bottom right pull his towel off while he’s deck changing (around 3:32)

PNW
Reply to  wahoooooowa
3 years ago

Crack kills

dmswim
Reply to  wahoooooowa
3 years ago

He had to have something to wave while cheering on Ted!

Swimmer
3 years ago

Giovanni Izzo, another freshman, also had over 70 points for the Wolfpack.

SwimGeek
3 years ago

I’ve confused by the closing line: “if either California or Texas fails to come in firing on all cylinders, NC State could be the first team in five years besides those two to earn a top five finish.” NCST was already top-5 last year. Perhaps you mean a *top-2* finish?

New Wahoo Fan
3 years ago

Everyone feel free to check out Schubert’s prelims 400 IM. When he is disqualified for the lochte rule coming off his last wall, it is very easy to see that he took at a maximum 3 dolphin kicks, much less 3 just on his back. I believe the intention of the rule is to keep the IM of pure status, and that kicking on your back as a technique to improve the freestyle leg is a violation of that. However, when it comes down to it, the rule shouldn’t be effecting the swimmers that aren’t exploiting these underwaters (pushing 15m off every wall). I think it would be a fair compromise that those who do not kick past the ~10m… Read more »

BGNole97
Reply to  New Wahoo Fan
3 years ago

Then you’d need an official at the “~10m mark” (do you actually mean “15m mark” like what is used for backstroke?). Or they could just simply not propel themselves with kicks until they were at least at 90-degrees off the wall. This is a much easier call for officials to make. I believe the original “Lochte Rule” was bad, but I think the revised one stipulating that swimmers could be on their backs coming off the wall as long as no propulsive movement is made is reasonable.

WahooWah
3 years ago

UVA – top 5 public universities in the Nation — TRY TOP THREE FOR THE LAST 23 YEARS – most of which UVA WAS THE TOP PUBLIC UNIVERSITY IN THE COUNTRY – ALONG WITH BERKELEY.

WahooWah
Reply to  WahooWah
3 years ago

^^ Tied with Berkeley for the top…

joyfff
Reply to  WahooWah
3 years ago

**umich is top

JP input is too short
Reply to  WahooWah
3 years ago

Top 3 or top 1 would still be in the top 5……

2 Cents
Reply to  JP input is too short
3 years ago

Then why not say they are a top 300 public university?? 1st, 2nd and 3rd are all in the top 300. So its true right?

Point is, it implies they were 4th or 5th at some point, which they never were.

Hey, Devry university, Grand Canyon U, Harvard, MIT, and Arizona State and Trump “University” are all in the top 7000 of American institutions of higher learning…. I’ll bet some of those schools are proud of that company huh?

Wahoowah
Reply to  JP input is too short
3 years ago

Doesn’t do it appropriate justice

JP input is too short
3 years ago

UVA might be about 6th-8th in NCAA individual qualifiers this year (Texas, Michigan, Florida, Cal, NC St for sure more, then possibly Stanford and USC depending on PAC-12s). They should have 10. That’s quite the turnaround.

Oldswimfan
Reply to  JP input is too short
3 years ago

10? Name 10 please

Acc85
Reply to  Oldswimfan
3 years ago

Giller- 2bk
Otto: 2br
Barnum: 1br
Clark: 1bk
Schubert: 4IM/2fly
Keblish: 1fly
Fong: 2fly
Magnan: 500fr
Casey: 1500/2bk/4IM
Georgiadis: 2fr

That’s 10. Some are closer to the bubble than others and it could change in the next week with last chance and PAC12s but yea

JP input is too short
Reply to  Acc85
3 years ago

That’s what my list looks like. The most likely bubble guys, in order, are Giller (200 bk 23rd), Georgiadis (200 fr 23rd), Magnan (500 fr 23rd). It’s sort of hard to imagine 6 or 7 new guys in one conference putting up faster times where PAC-12 guys are already scattered high up the leaderboard.

Oldswimfan
Reply to  Acc85
3 years ago

Nice

2 Cents
Reply to  JP input is too short
3 years ago

I agree on the UVA having about 10… but what about Indiana? They should have as many or more right? and the Louisville Freshman team alone might outscore enough teams to finish top 10… (with a little help from upper class men on relays).

JP input is too short
Reply to  2 Cents
3 years ago

Indiana has 8 that I can figure – Pieroni, Khalafalla, Lanza, Finnerty, Samy, Blaskovic, Brock.

And I’m not saying that Virginia will be 6th-8th (most of their guys aren’t going to score individual points unless they drop more time), just that they will have that many qualifiers – and qualifying is the first step to scoring… only one of the likely UVa qualifiers (Georgiadis) is a senior.

JP input is too short
Reply to  JP input is too short
3 years ago

And that’s only 7 because I forgot Fantoni. That’s 8.