Austin Katz was one of the top high school swimmers in the country at his time. He swam for the Sarasota YMCA Sharks, and was a multi-time YMCA National champion. From April 2015 to April 2016 he dropped his 100 back from 48.28 to 47.23 and his 200 from 1:43.70 to 1:41.48. As a No.6 recruit in the Class of 2017, Katz committed to swim for the Texas Longhorns.
As a freshman in college, Katz was a part of four winning relays at the Big 12 Championships. He won both of the backstroke events and broke the Championship Record in the 200 backstroke with a time of 1:39.10.
At the NCAA Championships, Katz scored 35 points and helped Texas win its fourth consecutive team title. He placed fourth in the 100 backstroke breaking the 45 second mark by 0.01 seconds. On the last day of the meet, Katz won his first NCAA Championship title in the 200 backstroke in front of his team mate John Shebat. Katz entered the final with the fourth fastest time but he managed to drop 1.31 seconds and take the title in 1:37.53.
Katz started the 2019 NCAA Championships by helping Texas to a national title in the 800 free relay, splitting 1:31.45 on the 2nd leg to aid the horns in breaking the NCAA, American, and US Open record. After initially finishing 16th in the 100 back with 45.39, Cal sophomore Daniel Carr bumped him to 17th after swimming a 44.86 in a re-swim. In the 200 back, Katz and teammate John Shebat went into finals seeded 1-2, and came out of finals finished that way as well. Katz went 1:36.45, annihilating his best time and touching in 2nd by a margin of .03 behind Shebat, making Katz the 3rd fastest performer in history in the event.
2016 Olympic Trials
At the 2016 Olympic Trials, after finishing up his Jr year of high school, Austin Katz was one of the top male high school performers at the meet. In the 100 backstroke, he swam a lifetime best (55.41) in the prelims to qualify for the semi-finals. In the semis, he almost equaled his performance (55.43) to wind up 15th. In the 200 backstroke, he made it all the way to the final heat, and ended up placing 5th overall (1:57.20) even after being 8th at the 100 and 7th at the 150.
At the 2017 Nationals, Katz furthered his career by placing 5th in the 200 backstroke (1:57.60) final again, just missing his best time, but qualifying him for the upcoming World University Games later that summer. He also finished 2nd in the B final in the 100 backstroke (55.57) after flipping 8th at the 50 wall.
2017 Universiade (World University Games)
At the 2017 WUG’s, Katz earned his first senior international medal in the 200 backstroke, touching in a new best of 1:56.70 to finish 2nd. He also earned another silver as a prelims swimmer on the 800 free relay.
2018 U.S. Nationals
Katz finished third in the 200 backstroke (1:56.12) and sixth in the 100 backstroke (54.06), both personal bests, at the 2018 Phillips 66 National Championships. His 3rd place finish put him on the Pan Pac Championships team, his first ever USA “A” team.
2018 Pan Pacific Championships
After swimming prelims of the 200 free (1:48.44) on day 1 and the 100 back (54.17) on day 2, Katz saved the best for last. He finished off his pan pacs performance with a bronze in the men’s 200 back, touching for third in a time of 1:56.00, just off of his prelims performance of 1:55.69.
2019 World University Games
In his solo event at his 2nd WUG’s, Katz avenged his loss from 2017, touching for gold in the 200 backstroke final with a time of 1:55.65. Katz went a lifetime best in the semi finals, touching at 1:55.57.