NCAA champion Brooke Forde will return to Stanford for one more season of NCAA eligibility while pursuing a masters degree.
Forde told SwimSwam this week that she’s been accepted to a one-year masters program through Stanford, and plans to continue swimming while working through that program.
Athletes have the opportunity for a fifth year of NCAA eligibility due to the coronavirus pandemic, which canceled the NCAA Championships in Forde’s junior year. She scored 20+ points in each of her three NCAA Championships appearances, including 43 points as a sophomore in 2019.
This past year, Forde was third in the 500 free (4:35.22), first in the 400 IM (4:01.57) and 13th in the 200 breast (2:07.63) at NCAAs. She also anchored Stanford’s 8th-place 800 free relay, splitting 1:43.3 for the best split among the four Cardinal swimmers.
Forde’s return should be a major boost to Stanford next season. She was the team’s top individual scorer by a longshot, putting up 40 individual points. No other Stanford swimmer scored more than 11 individually. In three seasons, she was the #1 overall scorer nationwide in the high school graduating class of 2017, scoring 104 points. Next year, she’s likely to add 40+ to that total.
Stanford had a handful of key athlete defer their enrollment last year. Between fifth-years like Forde and gap-year freshmen like Regan Smith and Lillie Nordmann, Stanford should have some significant star power joining their roster after a disappointing 9th-place team finish in 2021.