Update: the NCAA’s decision to cancel all winter and spring sport competition came in the middle of the women’s 1-meter event at the Zone C Championships – so the meet shut down three rounds into the six-round event. Below, we’ve covered the men’s event, which did finish, and the women’s event, which ended at the halfway mark.
— Kentucky Swim & Dive (@UKSwimDive) March 12, 2020
Though we’re not DiveDove, we do dabble in diving coverage, and as diving can have a major impact on the NCAA Swimming & Diving Championships, we cover NCAA Zone Diving – mainly through the lens of how national diving qualifiers could impact the team points battles later this month.
2020 NCAA ZONE DIVING
- Zones A, B, D, E: Monday, March 9 – Wednesday, March 13
- Zone C: Thursday, March 12 – Saturday, March 14
- Host schools, with live result links:
- Revisit our NCAA selection primer
*The NCAA has canceled its swimming & diving championships due to the coronavirus outbreak. These results are covered for posterity’s sake, though it appears NCAA invites won’t actually lead to a competition with no NCAA Championships.
That would have been a huge breakthrough for McPherson, a junior who was 49th of 50 divers at NCAAs on 1-meter last year. She was leading standout freshman Crawford (the Big Ten champ) as well as returning NCAA B finalist Bretscher with three rounds to go. McPherson had also beaten Crawford by six points in the preliminary rounds.
Kentucky’s Danny Zhang won the 3-meter springboard in a tough Zone C, which would have earned an NCAA invite, if the meet weren’t canceled. Zhang was 11th at NCAAs last year and would have been in line for an A final spot this time around, with half the A final not returning.
Ohio State and Indiana each put two men into NCAA qualifying spots, and Ohio State could have had up to four NCAA entrants with two other divers in the top 12. Freshman Lyle Yost was second for the Buckeyes – he projected as perhaps the most impactful freshman diver in the nation this year, with A final potential on all three boards.
Ohio State also got Joseph Canova an invite, and Jacob Fielding (8th) and Jacob Siler (12th) were just outside of invite range, but eligible to compete in the event if they earned an invite on 3-meter or platform over the next two days.
Indiana freshman Cole Vandevender was 5th and Mory Gould 7th. Gould was close to scoring on 1-meter last year and would have been a potential scorer at NCAAs this year.
SIMPLIFIED INVITE PROCEDURES
You can read a more in-depth look at the selection process here. Effectively, each Zone earns a specific number of qualifying spots in each event, based on how that Zone performed at NCAAs last year. Divers who place inside the qualifying places earn an NCAA invite. A diver invited in one event can compete at NCAAs in any other diving event where they were top 12 in their Zone meet. The highest-placing divers earn NCAA reimbursement, while lower-placing qualifiers can compete at NCAAs, but their school must pay for their travel and lodging at the meet.