Ginny Grams has taken a long, twisting, winding road through college swimming. She originally signed with Florida State and swam one year there, but wound up back home in Daytona Beach swimming for Daytona State College as a sophomore. After winning a trio of Junior College National Championships last year (16:45 in the 1650 free, 4:56.0 in the 500 free, 1:50.3 in the 200 free), she originally told the world that she would be transferring to Texas A&M.
As it turns out, her path back to Division I swimming took another turn. Grams has registered and enrolled in classes at Liberty University in Virginia, sources close to the program tell us, and will join their team in the fall with two years of eligibility left.
Liberty’s program is only four years old, but has put swimmers at the NCAA Championships each of the last two years; as we pointed out this morning, they are finalizing plans and beginning work on a huge new aquatics center that will include a 50 meter pool and a separate diving well.
They have built their success so quickly with a combination of home-grown swimmers (freshman Jessica Reinhardt, who qualified for NCAA’s in 2013) and transfers (Brye Ravettine, their first NCAA scorer, from the 2012 NCAA Championships), but regardless Grams’ addition should continue to push them toward their goal of being a top-25 program.
Grams’ best times in the freestyle races from 50 to mile are 50.9/1:49.5/4:53/16:45, all of which should play well in the Collegiate Coastal Swimming Association at least, as all will contend for conference titles. She should have the opportunity to earn a spot on both the 400 and 800 free relays for the Flames as well (and was faster than anyone at Liberty in the 200 free last season).
Liberty still has a ways to go depth-wise to compete for the conference title with Florida Gulf Coast, but with three-straight strong recruiting classes, they are making all of the right steps toward success. Liberty’s advantage is that they’ve made steps to the national level a bit sooner than did Florida Gulf Coast (another very new program) a few years ago.