In a Big Ten Conference where quantity is championed as much as quality, the Buckeye women have been as big as anybody in the Midwest in their recruiting haul over the past week.
We’ve been contacted by or about no fewer than 5 verbal commitments to Ohio State recently, and now that we’ve gotten a bit of a break (knock on wood), it’s time to load our readers up with the knowledge.
The top of the class is a pair of Annies – Annie Gillig of South Carolina and Annie Lazor out of Michigan. Collegeswimming.com ranks both swimmers right around the class’ top 50.
Gillig, who swims for the fast-rising Y-Spartaquatics club, will have primaries in the backstroke races, with a best of 54.37 and 1:55.45. She will add some immediate firepower to the Buckeyes’ backstroke group – barring any changes-in-order over the next 10 months, she will be their #2 100 backstroker (by just over a second behind Kelsey Moran) and their #2 200 backstroker (a tenth behind Emily Creran). Those two will both be seniors next year, which will leave Gillig as the Queen of the court a year later.
Gillig will supplement her backstrokes with either one of the IM races, as she has bests of 2:01.27 and 4:15.99, which will also be among the team’s best when she arrives at Ohio State.
Annie Lazor will bring a little bit of flash and flair to the Ohio State program, as she hails from Beverly Hills. Well, maybe not – Lazor swims for Birmingham-Bloomfield Atlantis, and lives in Berverly Hills, Michigan, rather than it’s more infamous counterpart in California.
Despite the less-exciting home town, Lazor is a huge addition to this program. She has breaststroke bests of 1:01.8/2:14.2. That would’ve put her as the best 100, and 2nd-best 200, breaststroker on the team last season. After Catherine Eitel graduates following this season, the Buckeyes would have been left with only one top-notch-potential breaststroker, freshman Ashley Vance, but they know have a very exciting duo.
For their 3rd recruit (that we’ll highlight), coach Bill Dorkendott stayed local and grabbed Camey Rabold out of the Westerville Aquatic Club in Columbus. She’s a very good middle-distance freestyler (1:49.99 in the 200), and my gut-feeling is that she’s got the potential to be even better. She also has bests of 51.76 in the 100 free and 4:55.8 in the 500 free, both done as a sophomore. Her 100 back is solid too at 56.1.
She will be the favorite at this year’s Division I Ohio State Championship meet in the 200 free, and my guess is that in college she will tend more towards a specialty in the 200/500, and come down a bit for the 100 in relays, as her shorter stature lends her more towards the longer distances. She should be well into the 1:48’s in that 200 by the time she starts training with the Buckeyes, which gives her a good shot at the 800 free relay as a freshman.
Erin Dunseith out of the Eagle Swim Team in Maryland will also add depth to the middle-to-distance group, with bests of 1:55.5/5:10/10:32 in the 200/500/1000 freestyles. She will probably tend longer as she matures too. And finally, Sara Craft out of New Jersey gave her verbal as well. She’s yet another addition to the increasingly-deep distance group, with bests of 1:54/5:01/10:19 in those same events.
I’m sure that this isn’t all from the Buckeye women’s recruiting class, but so far they’re off to a great start.