DURHAM, N.C. – Duke head coach Dan Colella and the Blue Devil swimming and diving program will look to carry the success of a historic 2018-19 season into the coming year, as the newest campaign kicks off Oct. 12.
Colella announced Tuesday the 2019-20 schedule, which is highlighted by a pair of home duals. Duke’s slate features dual meets against seven men’s and women’s squads that earned top-25 finishes at the 2019 NCAA Championships.
“Duke swimming and diving is coming off an exceptional year both in the pool and in the classroom,” Colella said. “We are eagerly awaiting the start of the 2019-20 campaign, as we have put together a terrific schedule – one that has both new and traditional competitors.”
Blue Devils Open 2019-20 Slate with Dual Meets
The 2019-20 season opener takes the Duke swimmers and divers to Tallahassee, Fla., to face ACC opponent Florida State Oct. 12. The Blue Devils then make their way back to Durham to host Georgia in the home opener at Taishoff Aquatics Pavilion Oct. 26.
Duke and the Bulldogs will go head-to-head for the first time since a neutral site meeting in 1981. The program’s last dual meet matchup with an SEC opponent came in the form of men’s and women’s team victories over South Carolina in 2017.
Road Tripping North in November
Colella’s programs hit the road in the second month of the season, traveling to Boston Nov. 8-9. The Blue Devils first take on Connecticut and ACC opponent Boston College before heading over to Cambridge to face Harvard and the Texas A&M men’s team.
The Duke men will go up against the Aggies for the first time in program history, while both squads will square off against Harvard for just the second time. In a 2015 meeting with the Crimson, the Blue Devil women came away with a 154-146 dual meet victory and the men fell just short.
“We have expanded outside the ACC with the addition of two strong SEC opponents in Georgia and the Texas A&M men, and the Ivy League with the addition of Harvard, so it should be a fast, highly-competitive season,” Colella said.
The end of November will see the Duke squads return to the area to compete at the Wolfpack Invitational in Greensboro, N.C., Nov. 21-23. Following the program’s annual training trip, action picks back up with a pair of trips to in-state opponents. The Blue Devils take on Queens University of Charlotte Jan. 11 in Charlotte and face ACC foe NC State Jan. 17 or 18 in Raleigh. The Wolfpack men and women took home both ACC titles last spring.
Duke to Tangle with Tar Heels in Regular Season Finale
The Blue Devils close the dual meet portion of the 2019-20 campaign Feb. 1 when they host ACC rival North Carolina in Taishoff. Last year’s meeting with North Carolina featured a back and forth battle that came down to the final relays, with the Duke men and women coming out on top for the third straight season.
Following a trip to the Janis Hape Dowd Nike Invitational in nearby Chapel Hill, N.C., the Blue Devil women and the program’s divers kick off the postseason at the ACC Championships in Greensboro, N.C., Feb. 19-22. The men’s swimmers take their turn at the conference championship in Greensboro Feb. 26-29 before the divers head to the NCAA Zone B Diving Championships in early March.
The Women’s NCAA Championships will be hosted by the University of Georgia March 18-21 in Athens, while the Men’s NCAA Championships are slated for March 25-28 in Indianapolis.
A Look at Duke
Behind a program record three individual and three relay All-America performances, the Blue Devil women were 23rd in the final 2019 NCAA Championship team standings, marking the second highest finish in women’s program history and the highest since 2011. Duke also qualified a relay to NCAA finals for the first time in program history. An ACC Championship meet full of milestones was capped by a fifth-place finish for Duke – the highest for the women’s program since 1981. The Blue Devils added another milestone to round out the 2018-19 campaign, coming in at No. 12 in the final TYR/CSCAA Division I Poll for the highest national ranking in program history.
The Blue Devil men secured their highest finish at the NCAA Championships since 2014, with junior Nathaniel Hernandez and senior Evan Moretti both claiming All-America honors in one-meter diving. Swimmers Max St. George and Miles Williams received invitations to compete in Austin as first-time qualifiers. At the ACC Championships, Moretti was named the league’s Most Valuable Diver after recording a meet-high 77 points across the three boards and garnering All-ACC honors in the three-meter competition. Over the course of four days in Greensboro, N.C., the Duke men’s swimmers took down program records in five individual and four relay events.
2019-20 Duke Swimming & Diving Schedule
12 – at Florida State, Tallahassee, Fla., 10 a.m.
26 – vs. Georgia, Durham, N.C., 11 a.m.
8 – at Boston College/vs. UConn, Chestnut Hill, Mass., 5 p.m.
9 – at Harvard/vs. Texas A&M (Men), Cambridge, Mass., 10 a.m.
21-23 – at Wolfpack Invitational, Greensboro, N.C., All Day
11 – at Queens University of Charlotte, Charlotte, N.C., 1 p.m.
17 or 18 – at NC State, Raleigh, N.C., TBD
1 – vs. North Carolina, Durham, N.C., 12 p.m.
7-9 – at Janis Hape Dowd Nike Invitational, Chapel Hill, N.C., All Day
19-22 – at Women’s ACC Championships, Greensboro, N.C., All Day
26-29 – at Men’s ACC Championships, Greensboro, N.C., All Day
TBD – at NCAA Zone B Diving Championships, TBD
18-21 – at Women’s NCAA Championships, Athens, Ga., All Day
25-28 – at Men’s NCAA Championships, Indianapolis, Ind., All Day