2021 BIG TEN WOMEN’S CHAMPIONSHIPS
- When: Tuesday, February 23rd to Saturday, February 27th | Prelims 11am | Finals 6:30pm (5pm Tuesday) CT
- Where: Minneapolis, MN (Central Time Zone) / Diving @ Purdue University
- Defending Champion: Ohio State (1x) (results)
- Live Results
- Streaming: Big Ten Network
- Championship Central
- Day 4 prelims heat sheet
The women’s Big Ten Championships rolls on to its 3rd of 5 days on Friday, with the 100 back, 100 breast, and 200 fly as the day’s events in the uniquely-scheduled meet.
Because of the extra spread in events, there are far fewer than normal ‘tough choices’ to be made by swimmers, and so there weren’t many high-seeded absences from Friday’s individual events.
The one exception is that Michigan junior Maggie MacNeil won’t swim the 100 yard back and will instead get a rest day to wind up for the 100 free on Saturday.
MacNeil, who is tied as the fastest 100 yard butterflier in history, has also shown versatility in certain spots in short course. Namely, her 50 backstroke leading off the 200 medley relay at each of the last two Big Ten Championships has been the fastest 50 backstroke in history.
So there was some hope, as the #2 seed, that MacNeil might take a crack at the 100 backstroke this week thanks to the spread-out schedule that no longer leaves that event in conflict with her specialty the 100 fly, but it looks like the Wolverine star will stick to her usual lineup. After winning the 50 free easily in 21.44 on Wednesday, and 100 fly on Thursday in 49.68, she’ll swim the 100 free on Saturday to close her meet.
That doesn’t mean that MacNeil will totally have Friday off, as she’s likely to swim a leg of Michigan’s 200 free relay on Friday evening.
The Ohio State women appear to be running away with their 2nd-straight Big Ten title. The Michigan women have a chance to distance themselves from Indiana on Friday: the Wolverines have 14 individual swimming events on the day, as compared to just 9 for Indiana.
Northwestern also has 14 individual entries. The Wildcats have been crushing program records and taking surprise placings throughout the meet so far.
Northwestern’s 7 scoreless swims on Wednesday were actually fewer than the more traditional blue-bloods of the conference like Michigan (8) or Indiana (10), but they don’t quite have the depth of swimmers in those high-scoring A finals to keep up just yet. – Northwestern had just 1 A finalist on Wednesday, as compared to 6 for Michigan and 4 for Indiana. The story on Thursday was similar – Michigan had 6 empty swims, compared to Northwestern’s 8 and Indiana’s 9, but Michigan and Indiana had more top-8 and top-16 finishes.
As more evidence of just how good Ohio State is on the tail-end of their conference roster, they had only 3 empty swims on Thursday, and one of those missed a scoring final by just 1 place.
TEAM SCORES (through 400 medley relay)
- Ohio State University 526
- Michigan, University of 358.5
- Indiana University 310.5
- Northwestern University 258
- Wisconsin, University of, Madi 237
- University of Nebraska-Lincoln 184
- Iowa, University of 169
- University of Minnesota 164
- Pennsylvania State University 149
- Purdue University 120
- Michigan State University 104
- University of Illinois 96
- Rutgers University 30