After Massive Time Drops, Alex Tomlinson Recommits from ECU to NC State

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After initially verbally committing to East Carolina University in the fall,  Alex Tomlinson has changed his commitment to North Carolina State, where he’ll arrive in the fall of 2020. Tomlinson graduated from Apex Friendship High School this year, but will be taking a gap year before enrolling at NC State.

During that gap year, he’ll be taking classes at local Wake Technical Community College and training for another year under Bruce Marchionda with the TAC Titans to prepare for the British Olympic Trials.

Since originally committing, Tomlinson has dropped massive time in his primary backstroke events, which is what likely moved him on to the radar of the Wolfpack, who finished 4th at last year’s NCAA Championship meet.

Within 2 weeks of his late-October verbal to ECU, he began dropping time, and in the cases of his best yards events, he dropped time at as many as 3 meet since.

Time Progression Since Verbal Commitment:

Best Time at Original Commitment to ECU Best Time at Recommitment to NC State
100 back 50.44 48.63
200 back 1:51.11 1:46.16
100 fly 53.61 49.10

When Tomlinson arrives, NC State will have just graduated one of the best backstrokers in the country – rising senior Coleman Stewart. As a junior last season, he was 2nd in the 100 yard back (43.98) and 4th in the 200 yard back (1:38.81). The only swimmer ahead of him in the 100 back, Dean Farris, is taking next season off to focus on Olympic training, making Stewart the returning favorite for the title.

Stewart was also the NCAA runner-up in the 100 fly (and is the top returner in that event), demonstrating the Wolfpack’s experience in training swimmers like Tomlinson who excel in both the 100 fly and 100 back.

Correction: this article previously said that Tomlinson was a high school senior.

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Silent Observer

A better comparison would be of what times Coleman was at when he arrived at NCState as a freshman.

I’m sure he’ll stay as a pro as well. So will be training with the team.


Congratulations Alex! Proud of you.


DUDE is showing that he wants to be great!!! Congrats

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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