Born Nov. 7, 1995 Paul Powers is an NCAA All-American at the University of Michigan, where he’s studying Mechanical Engineering. Powers is originally from Gainesville, Ga., and is a versatile sprinter, primarily competing in freestyle, but he also is competitive in the butterfly and backstroke events.
High School swimming
Powers graduated from North Hall High School as a three-time All-American and a nine-time Georgia state champion. He was a very early commitment in the recruiting season, and he also took looks at Stanford University and Auburn University. Powers was a member of USA Swimming’s National Junior Team, and he was also highlighted in Sports Illustrated’s 2012 feature of “Faces in the Crowd.”
Powers grew up competing for Splash Aquatics, but in 2014 he transitioned to train with the elite team of SwimMAC Carolina. Powers was a bit of a late bloomer – he was previously a basketball player before fully committing to swimming. In the summer of the 2014 he broke the National Age Group record in the 50m freestyle (17-18), and he’s a Junior Pan Pacific Championship gold medalist.
Powers competed in his freshman season as a Michigan Wolverine, where he earned NCAA honors, taking 8th in the 50-yard freestyle, and he swam on three relays. Powers earned his first individual Big Ten title when he won the 50-yard freestyle. During the regular season Powers earned Big Ten Freshman of the Week three times.
International junior competition
Powers is a NAG record holder, and he has represented Team USA on the international scene. At the 2014 Junior Pan Pacific Championships Powers won three gold medals – 50m freestyle, 100m freestyle, and as a member of the 400m freestyle relay. In addition he’s represented Team USA at the 2013 World Junior Championships and in the 2013 World Cup.
2015 World University Games
After his freshman season at Michigan Powers qualified for the 2015 World University Game team. He won a bronze medal for the United States in the 50-meter free, just 0.12 seconds from winning the gold.