David Nolan Scratches 200 IM

by Robert Gibbs 32

August 09th, 2015 International, News

David Nolan, the American Record holder in the short course yards version of the 200 IM, did not participate in the preliminaries of the 200 IM this morning at the Phillips 66 USA Summer Nationals in San Antonio, Texas.  The officials results show Nolan as DNS — Did Not Swim.

In 2011, Nolan set a legendary high school record in the 200 IM as a high school senior, leading to speculation he could be the heir apparent to Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte.  Four years later, he finally broke Lochte’s American Record in the event with a 1:41.07 at the Pac 12 Championships, then became the first man to go under 1:40 with a 1:39.38 at this year’s NCAA championships.

Yet, Nolan has never cracked two minutes in the long course version of the 200 IM, with his best time being a 2:00.35 from the 2013 USA Summer Nationals.  Meanwhile, NCAA runner-up Will Licon had the fastest time this morning in the event, posting a 1:58.50, which puts him among the top ten fastest American men ever in the event.

Nolan did swim the 100 free this morning.  His time of 49.63 qualified for this evening’s A-final as the seventh-fastest time from preliminaries.  That is just off his personal best of 49.50, which he swam earlier this week leading off Stanford’s 4×100 free relay.

Nolan simply may have not wanted to swim two events in the same day, having already been guaranteed a place in this evening’s 100 free final.  It also could be an indication that he feels that he has a better chance of making the 2016 Olympic team in the 4×100 relay, where the top six finishers in the individual 100 free qualify, than in the 200 IM, where Phelps and Lochte seem likely to be the two US representatives in this event for the fourth straight Olympics.

Cal commit Andrew Seliskar, who swam the second-fastest 200 IM in high school history this March, also scratched the 200 IM.  Seliskar seems to have been struggling this week, with times consistently slower than what he was swimming earlier this year.

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Nolan will never swim at the olympics


He still has a chance. Let’s say he doesn’t swim in 2016, doesn’t mean he won’t swim in 2020. He’s only about 23ish, so he’ll still be well back in his 20’s by 2020. Then, you really have to look at who WONT be at trials in 2020. Phelps and lochte will more than likely for reall hang up the suit. Will clary even stick around? Grocers, plummer, and thoman and Adrian, jones and Schneider on the back 9 of their careers.i think the landscape completely changes on the USA men’s side in 2020. dressel is clearly our sprint future. Ryan Murphy looks to be our backstroker. Kordes should be around in 4 years. Shields is there in fly. So… Read more »

Hulk Swim

Here’s the short list of people who are 23 and under who could be around in 2020 who are ranked ahead of Nolan in the 200m LC IM, since last September.

Prenot, Licon, Whitaker, Seliskar, Bentz, Stewart, Andrew, Kalisz, Harty, Josa, Martens, Jaeger, Williamson, Stewart, Ogren, Greishop, Andrew, Green, Miller, Weiss, Kramer, Patching, Dillinger, Okubu, McHugh, Ress, Molocek, Shebat, Lebed, Walker, McCurdy, Reid, Swanson, Owen, Papendick, Sanders, Shoults, Dipietro, Park, Sanders, Devine, Kline, Marcantonio, Alexander, Tesone, Pastorick, Leleikis, Beuse, Burns and Merilees.

Irish Ringer

Damn Hulk…you just served up a huge dose of reality for that poor Nolan fan 🙂

Hulk Swim

Here’s the men who are ahead do him in the 100m free since September… Adrian, Dressel, Chadwick, Conger, Copeland, Feigen, Held, Rooney, Dwyer, Schneider, Stubblefield, Jones, and Pieroni… Noteven that there is no Phelps or Lochte on that list, but I think we can all safely assume those two will be ahead of most of this list… and Ervin is a wild card… we’ll see. If Nolan makes semis, it will be an accomplishment. As a side note- our 100m free situation is bleak. I fear Phelps could be the 2nd fastest here and earn an individual swim (hopefully he’d not take it and focus on the 2IM and fly’s). But it doesn’t say much when a couple of old… Read more »


Agreed. Many swimmers focusing on NCAA swimming tend to get Olympic their dreams quashed.

Steve-O Nolan

Oh. Ok.

I kinda wonder what he’d do if he switched programs. He’s obviously got the talent to swim a 1:57 2 IM.


not being able to break 2 minutes after going sub 1;40 isnt about the program, its about the swimmer

He didn’t show though. So we don’t know if he can break 2 minutes right now.


I see him going sub 48.5 tonight no problem. As far as the 200 IM he is one of the fastest swimmers of the sport and a very intelligent person to go along with that. I see him not swimming the 200 IM until trials just to get the cut then dropping some monster time out in Omaha or he is changing his meet line up to possibly give a run at multiple Olympic qualifications.

Hulk Swim



Your list of guys ahead of him speaks volumes. Michael Andrew is in there, and he will go 1:58 next year, no sweat.


I can see him going low 49 tonight, but 48.5 is majorly ambitious. Nolan has improved over long course lately which is a real positive. I’m sure he has his reasons for dropping the IM, although not obvious to me. The important thing is that he is making personal bests, no one can complain about that.

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