Caeleb Dressel Breaks American, NCAA Records In 100 Breast


  • Wednesday, February 14 – Sunday, February 18
  • Rec Center Natatorium, College Station, TX (Central Time Zone)
  • Prelims 10AM / Finals 6PM
  • Defending Champion: Florida (5x) (results)
  • Championship Central
  • Psych Sheet
  • Live results
  • Live Video (finals)

Well, he did it again.

Florida’s Caeleb Dressel continues to amaze at his fourth and final SEC Championships, breaking the NCAA and American records in the 100 breaststroke in a time of 50.03. Dressel earns his second NCAA and American Record marks of the meet after he obliterated the 200 IM records on Thursday night. The swim knocks off Kevin Cordes‘ 2014 mark of 50.04.

The 21-year-old improved his personal best from 51.88 to 51.07 this morning, and appeared to have a bit left in the tank for tonight. That was definitely the case, as he now owns five individual SCY American/NCAA records, adding the 200 IM and 100 breast to the 50/100 free and 100 fly.

Chances are he won’t swim either the 200 IM or 100 breast at the NCAA Championships, as he’ll likely retreat to his usual three (50 free, 100 free, 100 fly). With this being his senior year, this meet was his last real chance to branch out and swim some events he usually doesn’t. He clearly wanted to leave his mark, and he’s done just that.

Check out the five fastest performers of all-time below:


1 Caeleb Dressel 50.03 2018
2 Kevin Cordes 50.04 2014
3 Will Licon 50.68 2017
4 Fabian Schwingenschloegl 50.77 2017
5 Nic Fink 50.8 2017

Race Video:

In This Story


  1. SwimGeek says:

    Dude. This is filthy.

  2. pvdh says:

    its just not fair

  3. Coach John says:

    does not compute

  4. SwimGeek says:

    He now how Am Records in free, fly, breast and IM. I know this sounds like blasphemy, but this reminds me very much of 2002-04 when Phelps was expanding his lineup all over the place. We’re seeing it again.

  5. joyfff says:

    This confuses me

  6. Distance Swimmer says:

    Caeleb Dressel broke swimming

  7. pvdh says:

    now he’s probably the 2nd best 100 breaststroker in the world….

    • Dee says:

      I wouldn’t go that far just yet; He could be, but there are a lot of talents who’ve never swum SCY. That said, I wouldn’t put it past him; I’m adopting a Kolesnikov approach with Dressel… Don’t expect anything, because he’ll probably blow it out the water and make me look like an idiot haha.

    • iLikePsych says:

      With how Cordes swam this past year he probably would be 49 low if he swam SCY again. The 50.04 record came from his junior year when Cordes was still struggling to break a minute LCM. Now he’s a 58-mid.

      • Dee says:

        Indeed; with fairly similar but slightly inferior pullouts and (imo) a stronger stroke. Dressel could drop somewhere between 59.5-1.00.5 I think; Which is still mind blowing when we all thought of him as pretty much a sprint freetyler 12 months ago.

  8. Go Bearcats says:


    Caeleb Dressel breaks SwimSwam

  9. amazing says:

    backstroke next?

  10. Caeleb Dressel Will Get 8 golds in Tokyo says:

    Damn, first person to own 5 American Records since MP in 2008

  11. Sch says:

    for a second there I thought he was going to break 50, and I started saying “oh my god, oh my god,” so intensely my family got worried something was wrong. monster swim for caeleb, a bright future ahead no doubt

  12. Buona says:

    Maybe it’s time for him to explore and work on LCM breaststroke? See if he could challenge Adam Peaty.

    • samuel huntington says:

      he would not be close to Peaty, you can see the strength of Dressel in breast is pullouts, which would not help him in LCM. Peaty is untouchable right now.

      • Buona says:

        Yeah.. Peaty is another level. But i was thinking if he puts in a lot of work for breaststroke. What will happen. By looking at the video, Dressel most likely won’t beat Peaty for now, maybe 3rd place finish in LCM. Most probably he won’t swim the breaststroke in olympics. He should be focusing on freestyle, fly and IM.

        • PK Doesn't Like His Long Name says:

          Unless the schedule changes significantly, which I’m guessing is unlikely, the 100 breast is a way more conducive add than the 200 IM. 200 IM would give him 3 swims one night (with the 50 and 100 fly semis). The 100 breast is a great event for him because it allows him to get his feet wet in the meet and the only conflict is the 400 free relay, which is at the opposite end of the session the second night of the meet.

        • Dee says:

          I don’t think he should change what he is doing; He will not beat Peaty in a LCM pool over 50 or 100; He wouldn’t get close to be honest. He could make world finals, grab medals, but why do that and risk hindering other events? He will dominate 50/100 free & 100 fly for a long time; He will also be looking at 50 fly & 200im for medals (surely?)… All three relays… That’s quite a schedule of better gold medal opportunities.

      • Dan says:

        I am a big fan of Dressel’s (and USA swimming in general). I would really like to see this but there is no way.

    • Dudeman says:

      Peaty and Dressel swim the 100 in almost completely opposite ways. Peaty’s strength is the straight swim and his pull-outs are fairly weak compared to others, whereas Dressel has unreal pull-outs and a strong stroke, but fairly average if it was to be thrown in a LCM tank with the best breastrokers in the world

  13. Teddy says:

    Swimswam machine broke

  14. WowWhatIsGoingOn says:

    This is unreal. No really this is absolutely unreal.

  15. Ervin says:

    Omg!!!! This insane. Please swim the 100 breast at NCAA’s…i wanna see a 49! U can drop the 200im cause no ones coming close to that, but keep the 100 breast please!

  16. Dan says:

    In the 100 fly, he races Schooling. In the 100 breast, there doesn’t seem to be the same level of competition. What should he enter on day 2?

  17. Honest observer says:

    What exactly would he do to the WR in the 100 SCM IM? Sure hope he hits the World Cup circuit next year.

  18. Aquajosh says:

    He’s turning into the male Tracy Caulkins. If he can get a backstroke record, he’ll be in a pantheon all his own among male swimmers. Gator Excellence.

  19. Pinodee says:

    If you’re planning to swim for Florida in the future and want to break a school record…good luck…

  20. A$AP POCKY says:

    I just peed a lil

  21. mikeh says:

    The greatest college swimmer since Tracy Caulkins.


      Give Natalie Coughlin some cred!

      • Caeleb Dressel Will Get 9 golds in Tokyo says:

        Dressel > Coughlin

        • Tammy Touchpad Error says:

          What were the 2nd fastest times ever in 2001 when Cougs was 49.97 and 50.01? Dressel might end up being a better big meet swimmer and getting more medals. But if I recall, Coughlin was seconds ahead of #2 in SCY at least and a good second ahead + in the 100 back LC

    • Aquajosh says:

      Just for scope, here’s how bonkers Tracy Caulkins was: She held the American records in the 100/200 breast, 200/400 IM, 200 back, 200 fly, and 500 free SIMULTANEOUSLY.

  22. OldBay says:

    Well Florida officially is the toughest school to break records at…

  23. SwimmerForever says:

    This is insane. Last year we were all surprised how he decided to try the 100 fly, and now he goes 50.03 in the 100 breast. Anyone ever think this could happen before today?

    • USA USA USA says:

      I mean he didn’t really “try” the 100 fly last year. He was in it in both his freshman and sophomore year finishing pretty well (45.6 – 9th, 44.4 – 2nd). I think his best time coming out of high school was either a 45 or 46 so he’s always been a great butterflier.

  24. Wahooswimfan says:

    So when does he swim the 200 free and 200 fly (and I guess now we should ask about a 200 breast too)?

  25. Sir Swimsalot says:

    Alright. Dressel is insane, BUT, I’m seeing these comments saying he’ll take down the backstroke records next. His back isn’t bad at all, but it’s obviously his weakest stroke if you look at his splits from his 200 IM. Nolan was faster when he set the previous AR, and Murphy is faster than Nolan in the 100 by a long shot. Even the greatest have weak links (think Phelps and breastroke)

  26. IM FAN says:

    Cordes 2014: 10.54, 23.58 (13.04), 36.83 (13.25), 50.04 (13.21, 26.46)
    Dressel 2018: 10.48, 23.42 (12.94), 36.67 (13.25), 50.03 (13.36, 26.61)

    I’m sure Dressel’s going to say “yeah I guess my breast is pretty decent” when interviewed.

  27. Buona says:

    Too hyped up about Dressel. Texas will most probably win the 2018 NCAA championships. This matters more.

  28. CD2020 says:

    Hes officially #2 All-Time now…..10 potential Golds in Tokyo. 50 and 100 Free. 50 and 100 Fly. 200 IM. 400 FR and 400 MR Men and Mixed and 800FR Men.

    • JimSwim says:

      If only ‘potential’ mattered in serious rankings.

      • CD2020 says:

        I think is actuals speak for themselves. He’s our best swimmer of all time in the 3 of the 4 100’s in yards and our best sprinter period in LCM. The comment was potentially what he could accomplish. The ranking is how I feel about him right now based on that he’s done.

    • phelps swims 200 breast rio says:

      plus diving and water polo

    • loblita says:

      Tokyo has no 50 fly.. so 9 golds only

    • AvidSwimFan says:

      10 golds in Tokyo won’t happen and this is coming from a huge Dressel fan. First the events. You named 9 events not 10, and there is no 50 fly at the Olympics. That brings it down to 8. And let’s be real with the schedule, toll from all the events and swimming heats, semis, and finals, level of competition, the unpredictability of the 50 free, I don’t see it happening.

  29. I <3 Dressel says:

    Caeleb Dressel is better than Michael Phelps ever was. Let’s be honest. This dude is freaking amazing at everything. He now has NCAA records in 3 OF THE 4 100S.

  30. Chad says:

    Is it legal to go past the 15 yard mark off the start?

  31. Mark Palace says:

    What a stud!! How does he steam line so effectively??

  32. Dee says:

    So; he’s basically Michael Andrew if Michael Andrew had endurance.

    Mind = Blown by this guy. Frighteningly talented.

    • Pvdh says:

      I don’t know how Andrew can look at Dressel and think USRPT based training is the answer.

      • Steve Nolan says:

        There is only one correct answer, good call. Everyone should do the same thing.

        • Pvdh says:

          It’s not about “one answer”. Swimming at its core is an endurance sport. Even the shortest events you need endurance. The best swimming minds for years have perfected endurance based training, and it has NEVER stopped working. I’ve never seen a supposedly elite talent like Andrew plateau like he has in almost all of his events by 17/18

          • Steve Nolan says:

            Endurance sport? Get outta here.

            What if MA would just be some middling, maybe-make a travel squad kid if he grew up swimming a usual “endurance” based program? What if a kid like Dressel would be going 48.5 in his 100y breast swimming MA’s program? We dunno!

            USRPT concepts make sense in literally every other sport – Usain Bolt didn’t run that mile 5ks,I don’t think – so idk why it wouldn’t translate in swimming. It’s shortsighted as hell IMO to say it’s foolish just b/c of how two swimmers are doing in 2018.

          • Aquajosh says:

            Track isn’t even a fair comparison. The impact forces of running and the constant pounding on the joints doesn’t allow sprint runners to train like swimmers. As it is even with the way they do train, runners are constantly getting injured.

          • Steve Nolan says:

            Track sprinters could train like high-volume swimmers, though. The concepts would be the same – longer, slower repeats than you’d do in competition.

          • Pvdh says:

            You’re missing the very obvious concept if maximum anaerobic capacity. 100/200m sprinters never hit the limit. Anything above 50 free, you’re going past anaerobic capacity.

  33. John26 says:

    This meet for Dressel is like the 2007 US Open meet where Phelps was just entered in his off events to see if he could break the existing world records (in the 100/200back for those who don’t recall)

  34. Joey Rogers says:

    Did he not DQ he passed the 15 yard mark under water off start?

  35. Lucas says:


  36. swim4fun says:

    We need to clone him and put three Dressels in for the medley relay in Tokyo

  37. Lol says:

    It’s SCY the equivalent of Swimming in Bath Tub. It doesn’t mean anything in the World of Swimming, it only matters in the US. Peaty and many others will smack him Long Course.

    • E+Gamble says:

      Your argument works if and only if the person you are talking about did not just win 7 gold medals, MVP at Worlds, and Swimmer of the Year last summer while swimming LCM. I also think Michael Phelps went through that same USA SCY swimming program. And I think he turned out just fine.

  38. Kirkola says:

    He’s not going to leave anything for anyone else

  39. E+Gamble says:

    I would love to watch a SCY race between Cordes and Dressel to view the stroke counts and pullout firsthand.

  40. Joel says:

    I’d be down to watch a Dressel vs Peaty showdown in Tokyo

  41. Steve Bird says:

    Unheard of to be a freestyle and butterfly swimmer and be that awesome in breaststroke.

Leave a Reply

Name will be published. Email address will not. By commenting you agree to our Terms of Use & Privacy Policy.

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James is currently a university swimmer for the Laurentian Voyageurs in Sudbury, Ontario, Canada. He is studying economics. Along with swimming, he also loves hockey. He's in his 14th season as a competitive swimmer. Best Times - SCM (LCM) 50 FR - 24.56 (25.12) 100 FR - 53.58 (56.70) 200 FR - 1:56.07 (2:04.29) 1500 …

Read More »

Don't want to miss anything?

Subscribe to our newsletter and receive our latest updates!