Hugo Gonzalez Set To Swim 200 Back At NCAAs For The First Time Since 2018


  • March 22-25, 2023
  • Jean K. Freeman Aquatic Center | Minneapolis, MN
  • SCY (25 yards)
  • Meet Central
  • Pre-Selection Psych Sheets
  • Live Results

For the first time since 2018, Hugo Gonzalez is opting to swim the 200 back over the 200 breast on the final day of NCAAs.

At 2018 NCAAs, representing Auburn, Gonzalez finished 27th in the 200 back in a time of 1:41.41 (his best time of 1:39.05 back then would have placed sixth overall). He then went on a three-year streak of swimming the 200 breast over the 200 back, being set to race the event at the canceled 2020 NCAAs, placing third in 2021 (1:51.20) and tenth in 2022 (1:51.45).

This year, Gonzalez is arguably in a much better position in the 200 back than the 200 breast. At Pac-12s, he dropped nearly two seconds from his 2018 best to go 1:37.17, which has him seeded second just 0.25 seconds behind his teammate Destin Lasco and makes him just the second swimmer in two years to get under the 1:38-point barrier. Meanwhile, his best time of 1:50.45 would have him seeded fifth in the 200 breast, and he’d have to deal with a plethora of sub-1:50 swimmers such as  NCAA record holder Leon Marchand, Max McHugh, and Carles Coll Marti.

Aside from the 200 back, Gonzalez will also been swimming the 200 IM and 400 IM, like he has done for the last three NCAAs that he’s competed at. He’s seeded second in the 200 IM and fourth in the 400 IM, with his 200 IM seed time being a new personal best.

Hugo Gonzalez, 2023 NCAAs Lineup:

  • 200 IM: 1:38.72 (2nd seed)
  • 400 IM: 3:37.65 (4th seed)
  • 200 Back: 1:37.19 (2nd seed)

At NCAAs last year, Gonzalez placed fifth in the 200 IM (1:39.82), won the 400 IM (3:32.88) in a time that was then an NCAA record, and placed tenth in the 200 breast (1:51.45). This season, it will be very difficult for Gonzalez to defend his 400 IM NCAA title against the rising Leon Marchand, who holds the new NCAA record with a best time of 3:31.57.

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Big Swim Fan 34
1 year ago

And he’s gonna do it looking handsome as ever

small bird
1 year ago

i’m not counting Hugo out on beating Marchand in the 4im!

regardless, it will be epic to watch

Snowpipers of Alaska
1 year ago

I did LOL at the “first time since 2018”. Giving Cierra Runge a run at longest collegiate swimming career ever.

1 year ago

Oh yeahhh

Lab Counter
1 year ago

“Rising” Marchand?!?!? Not so sure a World Champion and second fastest ever in the 4IM is rising! I think he has already arrived!

Reply to  Lab Counter
1 year ago

Didn’t say where he was rising from. Just that he’s rising. He went a best time in the 4 IM in January, then more best times in March. I’d say he’s rising, the only question is where to.

Reply to  swimmerswammer
1 year ago


About Yanyan Li

Yanyan Li

Although Yanyan wasn't the greatest competitive swimmer, she learned more about the sport of swimming by being her high school swim team's manager for four years. She eventually ventured into the realm of writing and joined SwimSwam in January 2022, where she hopes to contribute to and learn more about …

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