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Simon Casey, a high school state champion from Georgia, has verbally committed to continue his swimming career at LSU starting next fall.
“I am honored to announce my verbal commitment to further my athletic and academic career at LSU,” Casey wrote. “I wouldn’t have been able to do it without my amazing coaches, family, and teammates. GEAUX TIGERS 🐅🐅”
The Oconee County High School senior announced his decision back in May, just a few months after winning a Georgia High School Association 1A-3A title in the 500-yard freestyle. Casey reached the wall in 4:33.81, slightly off his personal best but still more than 10 seconds ahead of the field. He also placed second in the 200 free with a 1:40.49, setting himself up as the clear favorite for next year’s meet.
Casey kept his momentum going at the Bulldog Summer Invite in July, where he hit three Winter Nationals cuts. He clocked a 1:55.22 in the 200-meter freestyle, a 2:07.93 in the 200-meter backstroke, and a 56.36 in the 100-meter butterfly.
Last month, Casey capped his huge summer by helping his local Oconee Club Stingrays squad win its first county championship since 2002. He continued to show off his improved versatility by breaking the county record in the 15-18 boys 100-yard IM. Casey also placed first in the 50 free, 200 medley relay, and 200 free relay.
Best Times (SCY)
- 50 free – 21.19
- 100 free – 45.74r
- 200 free – 1:40.29
- 500 free – 4:33.53
- 100 fly – 51.05
- 200 back – 1:50.56
- 400 IM – 4:00.11
Casey could make an immediate impact in Baton Rouge, where Tigers head coach Rick Bishop is on a roll with the recent additions of Maggie MacNeil and Jade Hannah. With another year left to drop time before joining LSU, Casey is already less than four seconds away from scoring at the SEC Championships in the 200 free and about six seconds out of scoring range in the 500 free. He has shaved 26 seconds off his best 500 free time in less than two years and dropped 12 seconds off his best 200 free time since the COVID-19 pandemic hit in 2020. Casey isn’t too far from scoring at the SEC Championships in other events such as the 50 free, 100 free, 100 fly, 200 back, and 400 IM, too.
Also headed to Baton Rouge next fall is Max Eckerman, a breaststroke specialist from Florida. Like Casey, Eckerman announced his commitment to LSU in May, a couple months after the Sarasota Sharks standout posted a 2:00.91 in the 200-yard breast to sneak under the Junior Nationals standard.
“I am extremely excited to announce my commitment to continue my swimming and academic career at Louisiana State University,” Eckerman wrote. “I would like to thank my coaches, family, and teammates for making my dream possible. I can’t wait for the upcoming years! GEAUX TIGERS!!!🐅🐅🐅”
Eckerman might not have to wait long to make an impact, either, as his best 200 breast time is already about three seconds away from scoring at SECs and his best 100 breast time (56.18) is less than two seconds out of scoring range.
As a junior at Venice High last November, Eckerman placed third in the 100 breast at the Florida High School Athletic Association 4A State Championship with a time of 56.48.
Best Times (SCY)
- 50 breast – 25.67
- 100 breast – 56.18
- 200 breast – 2:00.91
- 50 back – 23.41
- 100 back – 50.79
The LSU class of 2027 will also include some international talent courtesy of Croatian sprint specialist Jere Hribar. At last month’s World Juniors in Peru, the 17-year-old brought home a silver medal in the 100 free (49.37) and a bronze in the 50 free (22.55)
“I am excited to announce my verbal commitment to continue my swimming and academic career at Louisiana State University,” Hribar wrote. “I would like to thank my coach, family and friends who supported me along this journey. Also, I would like to thank coaches Lyle and Rick for this opportunity. Geaux Tigers!”
Best Times (LCM)
- 50 free – 22.32
- 100 free – 49.37
- 50 fly – 25.05
- 50 back – 28.03
The LSU men finished 9th out of 10 teams at last season’s SEC Championships, but Bishop’s crew is in prime position to rise the ranks in the coming years — especially if they can stir up more transfer portal magic like this past offseason.
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