2023 Division I Men’s NCAA Championships: Day 2 Prelims Live Recap


Day 2 Prelims Heat Sheet

After an electric start to the meet, we’re back for the first prelims session of the 2023 Men’s Division I NCAA Championships. This session, we’ll see heats of the 500 free, 200 IM, and 50 free. Later in the day there will be prelims of 1-meter diving.

In the 500 free, it’s Cal’s Gabriel Jett who comes in as the top seed with the 4:09.66 that won him this year’s PAC-12 title. This is one of the most wide open races off the meet, and Jett will have his hands full with 2021 champion Jake Magahey and the Florida distance crew. Texas’ Luke Hobson is lurking way down the psych sheet in 20th, but after that 1:29.63 lead off on Texas’ NCAA record-setting relay, he should be a real threat for the title.

Leon Marchand was doing Leon Marchand things on Day 1 of these championships, posting both the fastest 50 breast split and 200 free split in history. He’ll aim to set himself up to defend his title in the 200 IM and possibly take a run at his NCAA record–which was the only one he didn’t break during his incredible outing at PAC-12s.

The 50 freestyle should be a barn burner, and it looks like it’s going to take something ridiculously fast to make the ‘A’ final. Jordan Crooks leads the way with his sizzling 17.93 from SECs, which made him just the second swimmer to break 18 seconds. Josh Liendo, Bjorn Seeliger, Brooks Curryand more will try to get in on the action.

500 Yard Freestyle — PRELIMS

  • NCAA Record: 4:06.32 — Kieran Smith, Florida (2020)
  • Meet Record: 4:06.61 — Matthew Sates, Georgia (2022)
  • American Record: 4:06.32 — Kieran Smith, Florida (2020)
  • U.S. Open Record: 4:06.32 — Kieran Smith, Florida (2020)
  • Pool Record: 4:08.60 — Townley Haas, Texas (2018)
  • 2022 Champion: Matthew Sates, Georgia — 4:06.61

Top 16: 

  1. David Johnston, Texas — 4:10.02
  2. Luke Hobson, Texas — 4:10.51
  3. Gabriel Jett, Cal — 4:10.62
  4. Alfonso Mestre, Florida — 4:10.78
  5. Jake Newmark, Wisconsin — 4:10.80
  6. Jake Magahey, Georgia — 4:10.83
  7. Jake Mitchell, Florida — 4:11.65
  8. Ross Dant, NC State — 4:11.81
  9. Lucas Henveaux, Cal — 4:11.92
  10. Coby Carrozza, Texas — 4:12.05
  11. Mason Mathias, Auburn — 4:12.15
  12. Michael Bonson, Auburn — 4:12.50
  13. Jack Hoagland, Notre Dame — 4:12.77
  14. Baturalp Unlu, Georgia Tech — 4:13.39
  15. Will Gallant, NC State — 4:13.46
  16. Andrew Gray, ASU — 4:13.59

Texas kept their momentum from their NCAA and American record in the 800 freestyle rolling, securing the top two seeds in the 500 freestyle. David Johnston leads the way in 4:10.02, which is a personal best for him, getting under the 4:10.95 he swam at the Minnesota Invite. His teammate, sophomore Luke Hobson, is about a half-second behind him in 4:10.51; a nice prelims follow-up to his 1:29.63 200 free lead-off.

It looks like it will be a tight race in the final, as the top six swimmers are separated by about eight-tenths of a second. After the Texas teammates, it’s top seed Gabriel Jett with a 4:10.62, just about a second slower than what he went to win at PAC-12s.  Jett won heat 6, taking over the lead from his Cal teammate Lucas Henveaux, who faded to third in the heat behind Jett and Florida’s Alfonso Mestre (4:10.78) and finishing ninth overall.

Wisconsin kept their momentum rolling as well, with a huge swim from junior Jake Newmark. He dropped two seconds from his lifetime best and seed time of 4:12.96, ripping a 4:10.80 to qualify for the ‘A’ final in fifth.

Jake Mitchell joins Mestre to make it two Gators in the ‘A’ final, qualifying seventh in 4:11.65.

After having no finalists in 2022, Auburn got two swimmers back in the ‘B’ final with Mason Mathias and Michael Bonson qualifying 11th and 12th.

And after missing last season due to injury, Jack Hoagland makes his return to the ‘B’ final with a season best 4:12.77.

200 Yard IM — Prelims

  • NCAA Record: 1:37.69 — Leon Marchand, ASU (2022)
  • Meet Record: 1:37.69 — Leon Marchand, ASU (2022)
  • American Record: 1:38.13 — Caeleb Dressel, Florida (2018)
  • U.S. Open Record: 1:37.69 — Leon Marchand, ASU (2022)
  • Pool Record: 1:39.54 — Jan Switowski, Florida (2018)
  • 2022 Champion: Leon Marchand, ASU — 1:37.69

Top 16: 

  1. Destin Lasco, Cal — 1:38.32 (Pool Record)
  2. Leon Marchand, ASU — 1:38.33
  3. Arsenio Bustos, NC State — 1:40.24
  4. Carson Foster, Texas — 1:40.56
  5. Hugo Gonzalez, Cal — 1:40.57
  6. Baylor Nelson, Texas A&M — 1:41.01
  7. Ron Polonsky, Stanford — 1:41.14
  8. Jake Foster, Texas — 1:41.52
  9. Carles Coll Marti, Virginia Tech/Grant House, ASU — 1:41.64
  10. (tie)
  11. Giovanni Izzo, NC State — 1:41.78
  12. David Schlicht, ASU — 1:41.80
  13. Hubert Kos, ASU — 1:41.83
  14. Raunak Khosla, Princeton — 1:42.00
  15. Julian Smith, Florida — 1:42.08
  16. Caspar Corbeau, Texas — 1:42.33

This should be an excellent race in finals between Leon Marchand and Destin Lasco, who went 1-2 last year with Marchand claiming the NCAA record in a lightning fast 1:37.69. They both won their respective heats, with Lasco edging out Marchand by a hundredth for both the pool record and the top seed heading into the finals.

Both threw down some blazing splits for prelims. Lasco was 21.88/24.10/29.10/23.24 en route to a 1:38.32, just off what he went to finish second last year. In particular, it’s his backstroke split that stands out, as it’s a full second faster than his split from 2022 NCAAs.

For his part, Marchand also wasted no time getting going this morning, and was well under his own NCAA record pace for much of the race. He split 21.43/23.62/27.94/25.33. He turned to the freestyle leg a full two seconds ahead of Lasco before shutting it down and cruising home on free. He and Carson Foster tied for the slowest free split of the top 8 with a 25.33, signaling that both could have a lot more in the tank for tonight. Foster added .14 from his season best to move through to the final in 4th (1:40.56). He’s joined by his brother Jake Foster (1:41.52) in the ‘A’ final.

NC State’s Arsenio Bustos had an excellent swim, clocking 1:40.24 to qualify third overall. It’s a new lifetime best for the sophomore, shaving seven-hundredths off his previous mark, which he clocked to win the event at ACCs last month.

Freshman Baylor Nelson had a solid prelims swim, adding a couple tenths to qualify for the championship final in sixth. After qualifying for the ‘B’ final last year, Ron Polonsky made the jump to the ‘A’ final with a time of 1:41.14. It took a 1:41.52 to qualify for the ‘A’ final this year, while last year it took 1:40.91.

Caspar Corbeau had a big swim out of heat 3. He led from start to finish, dropping over two seconds for a season best time of 1:42.33. The time got him in the ‘B’ final for the second straight year by just .09. It’s an important pick up for Texas, as Corbeau was seeded way back in 50th.

50 Yard Freestyle — Prelims

  • NCAA Record: 17.63 — Caeleb Dressel, Florida (2018)
  • Meet Record: 17.63 — Caeleb Dressel, Florida (2018)
  • American Record: 17.63 — Caeleb Dressel, Florida (2018)
  • U.S. Open Record: 17.63 — Caeleb Dressel, Florida (2018)
  • Pool Record: 17.63 — Caeleb Dressel, Florida (2018)
  • 2022 Champion: Brooks Curry, LSU — 18.56

Top 16: 

  1. Jordan Crooks, Tennessee — 18.25
  2. Bjorn Seeliger, Cal — 18.46
  3. Josh Liendo, Florida — 18.54
  4. Brooks Curry, LSU — 18.72
  5. Jack Alexy, Cal — 18.77
  6. Gui Caribe, Tennessee — 18.81
  7. Youssef Ramadan, Virginia Tech/Jack Dolan, ASU — 18.87
  8. (tie)
  9. Noah Henderson, NC State/Van Mathias, Indiana — 18.89
  10. (tie)
  11. David Curtiss, NC State — 18.93
  12. Nyls Korstanje, NC State — 18.84
  13. Abdelrahman Elaraby, Louisville — 18.96
  14. Ruslan Gaziev, Ohio State — 19.00
  15. Matt Brownstead, Virginia — 19.03
  16. Liam Bell, Cal — 19.04

Simply put, this was an insanely fast morning for the 50 freestyle. It took an 18.87 to make the ‘A’ final, and a 19.04 to earn a second swim. NC State has three swimmers who broke 19 seconds (Noah Henderson, David Curtissand Nyls Korstanje) yet not one of them qualified for the ‘A’ final.

Jordan Crooks followed up his monster 17.93 at SECs by posting the top time of the morning. He used an excellent underwater of his turn to win the final heat in 18.25, which is .21 seconds ahead of the second place qualifier, Bjorn Seeliger. The Cal junior, who holds a personal best of 18.27, dropped four-tenths from his season best with an 18.46. He out-touched Josh Liendo, who was coming on strong in the closing yards, for the win in the penultimate heat. With his time of 18.54, Liendo is the third seed heading into finals.

Crooks’ teammate Gui Caribe made his first individual ‘A’ final; coming within two-hundredths of his lifetime best with a 18.81 for 6th seed.

The defending champion Brooks Curry looked the best he has all season, dropping an 18.72 to qualify fourth. It’s a season best for him by about two-tenths, but perhaps more significant is the fact that the time is .13 seconds faster than what he posted in prelims last year en route to his title.

Sophomore Jack Alexy chose an excellent moment to break 19 seconds for the first time. Coming into the meet, his lifetime best was a 19.13 from 2023 PAC-12s, but he blew by that here with an 18.77. That’s a .36 second drop and moves him from 24th seed into fifth seed heading into finals. It’s a nice points pick up for Cal, who lead the top contenders in the team race with 5 ‘A’ finalists on the session.

Also going sub-19 for the first time was Van Mathias, who dropped .11 from his Big Tens winning time (19.00) to qualify for the ‘B’ final with an 18.89. On Day 1, Mathias posted the fourth-fastest 50 breaststroke split of all-time.

As we mentioned, returning ‘A’ finalist Korstanje missed the ‘A’ final, but he wasn’t the only 2022 ‘A’ finalist to miss the cut this year. Virginia’s Matt Brownstead posted a season best time of 19.03 to scrape into the ‘B’ final in 15th. At this meet last year, he was 18.60 in prelims.

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Trojan Man!
2 months ago

Can someone please file a “MISSING PERSONS” report for the USC swimmers? No relays entered and only two swimmers there? How far they have fallen! Welcome to the Coach Mauer era!
Have they ever had not even one relay entered at the NCAA Championships? Wow!

2 months ago

is anyone streaming this?

Speedy K
2 months ago

Predicted that Brooks Curry would show up despite his low seed and boy am I glad to see it

2 months ago

Curious what ppl think of Corbeau staying a 5th year or calling it a collegiate career, then focusing attention on Paris24? Too early to think about?

Octavio Gupta
Reply to  SwimminIsGood
2 months ago

He gone

Swim Alchemist
Reply to  Octavio Gupta
2 months ago

Is this confirmed?

2 months ago

Looks like Texas went 1 up, two down in diving. I’d guess 15 to 20 points.

Reply to  Swimdaddy
2 months ago

Not enough

Juan Cena
2 months ago

‪Marchand 21.40, 23.72, 27.76, 23.43 for a 1:36.31‬

Reply to  Juan Cena
2 months ago

That’s what I’ve got my money on, but if you take his fly-breast splits from prelims with his record free, he might even go 35.9

Teri sucks
2 months ago

UC Berkeley investigating Cal AD Jim Knowlton, Associate AD Jennifer Simon-O’Neill regarding the Teri McKeever scandal


not american
2 months ago

You know whenever leon shuts down his free that something crazyy is coming at night

About Sophie Kaufman

Sophie Kaufman

Sophie grew up in Boston, Massachusetts, which means yes, she does root for the Bruins, but try not to hold that against her. At 9, she joined her local club team because her best friend convinced her it would be fun. Shoulder surgery ended her competitive swimming days long ago, …

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