2024 M. NCAA Previews: Potential Sub-45 To Make Any Final In Men’s 100 Back


Men’s 100 Back

Overall, it did not even take a sub-45 swim to make the ‘A’ final a year ago as a 45.05 was 8th in prelims, but the top 16 seeds this year are already below the 45-second mark, and #17 Aiden Hayes of NC State is entered at 45.01.

The Sub-44 Club

Only one swimmer comes into the meet having gone under the 44-second mark this season so first we introduce Arizona State’s Hubert Kos who blasted a 43.75 in finals of the event at Pac-12s to be the top seed coming into NCAAs. He also swam a 44.03 in prelims and a 44.04 in the team’s 400 medley relay giving him the fastest three swims in the NCAA this season.

Kos has switched his event lineup from a year ago, going from the 400 IM to this event this season. The World Champion in the LCM 200 back, Kos already broke Ryan Murphy’s 200 backstroke NCAA record at Pac-12s and will look to threaten Luca Urlando’s NCAA record in the shorter of the two backstroke events.

Also previously under the 44-second mark is #7 seed Brendan Burns of Indiana who is the defending Champion in the event after swimming 43.61 a year ago. Last year, Burns competed in the 100 fly and 100 back double on day 3 of the meet. This season, Burns has opted NOT to do the 100 fly and 100 back double and instead swim the 200 back and 200 fly double on the final day. Despite the double a year ago, with the 100 fly coming before the 100 back, Burns still swam to an NCAA title. Without the 100 fly this season, Burns looks to be even stronger and more “rested” for his race in the 100 back.

Two years ago, Kacper Stokowski won the NCAA title in the event swimming a 44.04. Last year, Stokowski finished just behind Burns in 43.86. The last three years, Stokowski has been on average about half a second slower at ACCs than he typically swims at NCAAs which is a good sign for the #4 seed coming into the meet as he looks to take back his title.

Cal’s Destin Lasco is the #3 seed coming into the meet but his 44.28 comes from midseason as he skipped Pac-12s competing at the Westmont Pro Series instead. Lasco has been under the 44 mark before as she swam a 43.94 for 3rd in the event a year ago. Like much of the field, he has the endurance as he won the 200 backstroke a year ago and also was 2nd in the 200 IM behind Leon Marchand.

Freshmen Flourishing

There are two freshmen in the top eight seeds with #2 Jonny Marshall of Florida and #5 Will Modglin of Texas. In his first year with Florida, Marshall has already made waves going from 46.31 to 44.12 in less than a year as he swept the SEC titles in the backstroke events.

Modglin has also already improved during his freshman season at Texas going from 45.01 to 44.49. Unlike Marshall, Modglin did not swim his season best at his respective conference championship as he instead swam 44.75. With the Texas men’s past success, things look good for Modglin as that goes but with this field, it is going to take more than it did a year ago to make it back.

Other SEC Power

Out of the top 16 seeds, half of them come from the SEC. Besides Marshall, the conference is also home to #6 seed Ruard van Renen (Georgia), #9 Adam Chaney (Florida), #10 Bradley Dunham (Georgia), #11 Nate Stoffle (Auburn), #12 Grant Bochenski (Missouri), #13 Aidan Stoffle (Auburn), and #14 Harrison Lierz (Tennessee).

Van Renen made the ‘B’ finals of both backstrokes last year while he was at Southern Illinois but he has since transferred to Georgia. Last year, he won the 100 back B final in 44.67, a time that would have finished 6th had he made the A final. He comes in as the 6 seed but with a field so tight, every hundredth counts as he was off his previous best time in prelims last year.

Teammate Bradley Dunham returned for his 5th year with the Bulldogs. Like van Renen, Dunham also made the ‘B’ final of both backstrokes a year ago. Dunham is also one to usually swim better at NCAAs than SECs and he will need to do so if he wants to make the A final.

Florida’s Adam Chaney has been a staple in NCAA finals during his career. He swam faster at NCAAs in his first two years with the Gators before being faster at SECs last year than NCAAs, contributing to his 4th place finish in 44.42. His best time is a 44.17 so he has more in the tank.

Other Potential ‘A’ Finalists

Penn State’s Cooper Morley did not make NCAAs last year as he had a season-best of 45.89 which placed him 5th at Big Tens but already has been a second faster in his sophomore season with a 44.74. That has him as the 8th seed. Originally from Australia, Morley has settled into short-course yards swimming this season and will need to continue to swim well if he wants a spot in the A final.

Like Lasco, Cal’s Bjorn Seeliger also skipped Pac-12s so he is entered as the #14 seed with 44.99 from the Arizona vs Cal dual meet in January. Seeliger missed the A final in the 100 back last year but was 8th in the event two years ago. His best time stands at 44.58 from the 2022 NCAA prelims.

Tommy Janton of Notre Dame won the ACC title in the 200 back last month and was 10th in the 100 back in a season-best of a 45.17. His lifetime best is a 45.12 from last year’s NCAAs which earned him a spot in the B final as it was during a swim-off. Janton had plenty of success this past summer, making the A final of the LCM 200 back and the B final of the LCM 100 back at US Summer Nationals. Hitting or surpassing his lifetime best from his swim off a year ago looks necessary to make the A final but he is a contender for a second swim as the 21 seed even if he keeps the 100 fly double earlier in the session.

Owen McDonald for Arizona State was 6th last year in the event in 44.85 breaking the 45-second barrier in prelims with a 44.97. This year, he is the #31 seed in 45.59. Although he is the #31 seed, he did not swim the event at Pac-12s and his best time was from November’s Utah vs Arizona State dual meet. McDonald swam well at Pac-12s posting personal best times in all three of his individual events (200 free, 200 back, 200 IM) which bodes well for him at NCAAs as he looks to final once again.


1 Hubert Kos Arizona State 43.75 43.75
2 Destin Lasco Cal 44.28 43.93
3 Brendan Burns Indiana 44.62 43.61
4 Kacper Stokowski NC State 44.36 43.83
5 Will Modglin Texas 44.49 44.49
6 Jonny Marshall Florida 44.12 44.12
7 Ruard van Renen Georgia 44.50 44.50
8 Owen McDonald Arizona State 45.59 44.85

Darkhorse: Tanner Filion of Notre Dame was the Division III Champion last year as a senior with Whitman College in a 45.75. He has already been faster this season swimming a 44.99 at ACCs after swimming a 46.03 in prelims. Filion might have more in him and in his first and only year with a Power 5 program, now is his time to shine.

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2 months ago

i think i was a little too ballsy putting owen at 3rd or 4th in my pickems but i am really counting on the bowman taper lmao

2 months ago

I was at my Grandfather’s house yesterday with my nephew. We were eating goldfish and doing puzzles together.

I then went to the bathroom and heard loud noises that sounded like my nephew gasping for air.

I rushed out of the bathroom and asked my Grandpa what happened.

“Bjorn Seeliger” my grandpa said.

I broke down in tears, I knew that he had choked.

Reply to  Andrew
2 months ago

Let’s talk after sub 20 Andrew

Reply to  CELL
2 months ago

That’s what everyone said last year, anddddd 20.29. Seeliger only swims well when there’s no expectations. Bro folds in finals like a wet paper towel

Reply to  Andrew
2 months ago

Never mind you were right

Long Strokes
2 months ago

This cover photo always trips me out

2 months ago

Ace Chaney is washed but he is not missing A final. Lasco over Burns is questionable when burns has beat him the last 2 years and his PB is 3 tenths faster

Reply to  Andrew
2 months ago

Lasco’s season is really confusing to me. He looked great at midseason + end of season dual meets, but really bad at the Pro Series compared to his Cal teammates. He does perform at NCAAs but I’d agree that I’m not sure he’s the favorite over Burns.

Not Andrew
Reply to  Andrew
2 months ago

It was coming. No notes of Bjorn hate?

Aragon Son of Arathorne
2 months ago

dog fight between Burns and Kos. I really want Burns to win. I also want to see him do really well at trials, hes put in a hell of a career.

Reply to  Aragon Son of Arathorne
2 months ago

Burns’ underwaters are a blessing and a curse. I’d love to see him shock the world at trials, but he has to be faster on the surface to be internationally competitive in the long pool.

About Anya Pelshaw

Anya Pelshaw

Anya has been with SwimSwam since June 2021 as both a writer and social media coordinator. She was in attendance at the 2022 and 2023 Women's NCAA Championships writing and doing social media for SwimSwam. Currently, Anya is pursuing her B.A. in Economics and a minor in Government & Law at …

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