2017 MEN’S NCAA CHAMPIONSHIPS
- Wednesday, March 22 – Saturday, March 25
- IUPUI Natatorium – Indianapolis, IN
- Prelims 10AM/Finals 6PM (Eastern Time)
- Defending Champion: Texas (results)
- Championship Central
- Psych Sheet
- Live stream: Wednesday/Thursday Prelims & Finals, Friday/Saturday Prelims / Friday/Saturday finals on ESPN3
- Live Results
Florida junior Caeleb Dressel announced on Twitter that he will be leading off the Gators’ 800 Free Relay to open up the men’s NCAA’s championships.
Finally get to lead off the 800 free relay tonight at #NCAASwimDive #gators
— Caeleb Dressel (@caelebdressel) March 22, 2017
- Former Bolles club teammate Joe Schooling tweeted back at Schooling in a vein suggesting that Dressel was not being serious.
- As of a few minutes ago, Florida was the only school not to turn in its relay card, according to an announcement.
- Final Update: Dressel did not swim the relay for Florida.
We’re taking Dressel at face value here, and if true, this is an absolute game changer in this relay. The Texas Longhorns, as the defending championships and with at least three members of the USA’s 4×200 free relay team on this relay, were the prohibitive favorites. But, as we said in our preview, the Florida squad is very deep in this distance, and with Dressel they can challenge for the win.
No word yet on the exact composition of the rest of the Gators’ relay, but it should include three of the following four:
Mitch D’Arrigo (1:32.69 split at 2016 NCAAs)
Maxime Rooney (1:31.54 split at 2017 SECs)
Jan Switkowski (1:31.33 split at 2016 NCAAs)
Mark Szaranek (1:32.7ish split at 2016 NCAAs and 2017 SECs)
Dressel sports a 1:33.42 lifetime best in the 200 yard freestyle, but a 1:48.39 best in long course. Given those numbers, along with his 40-point 100 free, and you have to figure a tapered Dressel should be good for at least a 1:32-low, and almost certainly a 1:31-mid or better.
If Dressel is able to leadoff with even a 1:31.5, that, plus the best splits from above, puts the Gators roughly a 6:07 flat, over a second faster than the Longhorns swam to set the U.S. Open and NCAA records last year.
Update: Dressel did not swim the event, instead giving way to Switkowski, Rooney, D’Arrigo and Szaranek.