“I am extremely excited to announce that I have verbally committed to swim for the University of Florida. I want to thank all of my friends, family, and coaches for helping me on this journey. Go Gators!”
The University of Florida men’s swimming and diving team received a verbal commitment from Clearwater, Florida’s Robert Finke, the #7 recruit on our list of top 20 boys in the high school class of 2018. Finke is the top pure distance freestyler in the class, with the fastest 1650 and 1000 times, and has some impressive times in IM as well. He will fit quite nicely into the Florida lineup, especially given that the Gators have also pulled in verbal commitments from future training partners Kieran Smith (#8) and Trey Freeman (#9), as well as sprinters Isaac Davis, Will Davis, and Kacper Stokowski for the class of 2022.
Finke is a two-time USA Scholastic All-American and NISCA All-American from Countryside High School. He swims year-round for Saint Petersburg Aquatics. He won the 200 IM (1:49.34) and 500 free (4:22.92) at the 2016 FHSAA Class 4A Championships last November. Showing his versatility, he also led off Countryside’s 200 medley relay in 23.36 and 400 free relay in 46.52, both best times.
Finke was named to the USA National Team for 2017-18 after posting the nation’s second-fastest time in the 1500 free at U.S. Nationals and World Championship Trials. He also qualified for World Championships in that event. Last summer, as a member of the National Junior Team, he won both the 800 free and 1500 free at the 2016 Junior Pan Pacific Championships.
His best SCY times are:
- 1650 free – 14:37.71
- 1000 free – 8:49.71
- 500 free – 4:20.86
- 400 IM – 3:47.65
- 200 back – 1:47.27
- 200 fly – 1:48.65
Finke’s best 1650 time would have scored 9th at 2017 NCAA Division I Men’s Championship. He has a little way to go in order to make an impact in the 500 free (it took a 4:14.09 to get a second swim in 2017). His 400 IM might even get him there first (it took 3:43.64 to make the B final in 2017). All in all, Finke is a major pick-up for the Gators, who are keeping one of their top native sons in the fold.
If you have a commitment to report, please send an email with a photo (landscape, or horizontal, looks best) and a quote to [email protected].