Big Ten Plans to Move to 4.5 Day Format for 2021 Swimming Championships

Braden Keith
by Braden Keith 14

February 03rd, 2021 News

The Big Ten Conference is moving to a four-and-a-half day championship format for the 2021 men’s and women’s swimming & diving championships that begin later this month.

Last week, Ohio State announced via a press release that the Big Ten men’s championships would be held from March 2 – 6. This spans 5 days of competition, which is a day longer than the meet is usually held.

Initially, SwimSwam assumed this was an error. But, after a spokesperson from the school verified that those were the dates received from the conference, SwimSwam was able to confirm with multiple conference coaches that the present plan is to host four-and-a-half day championships.

Meets will be held Tuesday through Saturday, with the first day being an evening-only session, and continuing into four days of competition. Coaches are meeting on Wednesday to try to nail down the exact schedule, but are planning to somewhat mirror the 5-day SEC Championship format that has been used for the last few seasons in that conference, though there are expected to be some deviations.

Coaches have told SwimSwam that the idea behind stretching out the conference championship meet is to reduce the number of individuals in the building at any given time amid the COVID-19 safety protocols. At present, the change is being planned as a temporary shift for this season only to deal with the complications of the pandemic.

Updated 2021 Big Ten Conference Championship Schedule:

  • Big Ten Men’s & Women’s Diving Championships – February 24-27 – Purdue University, Lafayette, Indiana
  • Big Ten Women’s Swimming Championships – February 23-27 – University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Big Ten Men’s Swimming Championships – March 2-6 – Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio

Ironically, the SEC this season will move to a more traditional 4-day championship format, which includes splitting their men’s and women’s meets (they usually hold a combined-gender event).

The Michigan men won the 2020 Big Ten Championship, ending a 3-year Indiana title streak. On the women’s side, Ohio State pulled off a surprisingly-dominant victory over arch-rivals Michigan.

The Indiana men and Ohio State women were scheduled to return the most points for this season from last year’s conference rosters, based on eligibility, though a number of other factors in the pandemic season will impact the outcomes.

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2 months ago

Braden – the 5-day schedule may be accurate, but I’m pretty sure “December” is not!

2 months ago

Just great that it appears there will be championships and an NCAA meet this year! – its been a long drought for us fans.

2 months ago

The Hoosiers will once again reign supreme and win by massive amounts! Nobody can stop Coach Looze and IU! Go Hoosiers!!

Reply to  HoosierDaddy
2 months ago

…except themselves and the transfer portal… and maybe a couple other teams

Reply to  HoosierDaddy
2 months ago

Ease off the caffeine bro

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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