Hunter Armstrong Retires From NCAA Swimming, Will Turn Pro

Ohio State junior and first-team All-American Hunter Armstrong has told SwimSwam that he will forego his final two years of NCAA eligibility to turn pro.

Armstrong has had considerable success in his NCAA career. At Ohio State won two Big Ten titles in the 50 free and 100 free, and had a career-high fifth-place finish in the 100 back this year at NCAAs. Prior to swimming for the Buckeyes his sophomore and junior year, Armstrong competed for West Virginia as a freshman, finishing third in the 100 back at the 2020 Big 12 Championships.

However, it is evident that he is much stronger in the long course pool.

The long course prowess that Armstrong has was first put on display when he made the Olympic team in the 100 back after getting 13th in the same event at NCAAs last year. But we recently found out that 2021 was only the beginning for him, as he later went on to drop over a second to make the 4×100 free relay at the 2022 U.S. World Championship trials this year with a new best time of 48.25. Then, later in the meet, he broke the world record in the 50 back with a time of 23.71 and then beat out world record holder Ryan Murphy in the 100 back with a time of 52.20.

Aside from his success in the big pool, Armstrong’s decision also makes sense because of what he told SwimSwam in a press conference interview this week. In that interview, he said that he didn’t like to train in yards and preferred meters much more.

“I have always been better with less underwaters, so the more walls there are, the worse I get.”

Training full-time in meters will allow Armstrong to have more opportunities to develop himself into America’s top male backstroker.

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Tea rex
6 months ago

Where is he going to train? If he trains at OSU, that will still be scy from September-March

swimws
Reply to  Tea rex
6 months ago

They also train LCM during that time.

Tomek
6 months ago

Every time is see the first three words of the story heading I still get nervous after all this time

Awsi Dooger
6 months ago

I’m not a fan of this move. I appreciate the kids who value the college experience and competition, even if it’s with the Gators.

As soon as I saw this header I became less of a fan of Hunter.

Joel
Reply to  Awsi Dooger
6 months ago

Aren’t you a happy Chappy today? Let Armstrong decide what is best. College swimming is not for everyone obviously. You are not in his shoes

MIKE IN DALLAS
6 months ago

I like the LATIN tattoo on his: Invictus Maneo [I remain unvanquished!]
kinda says it all at this stage in his WR life!

swifter
6 months ago

Great to see talented young people/athletes get paid for extraordinary performances.
Wait, isn’t that the American way?
Much success to Mr Armstrong.

Bobo Gigi
6 months ago

An American who doesn’t like the bathtubs!
Congrats to Mr Armstrong.
If that could inspire some other people.
In athletics more and more often the best young athletes either turn pro before college or after one or two years in college. Why not in swimming as well?
I’ve nothing against college swimming. It’s fun to watch. But it’s not made for everybody. Some athletes will benefit from it. And some others among the best juniors will stall or will move backwards in LCM. I’m pretty sure that MP would not have had the same glorious career if he had been a college swimmer during 4 years.

Riccardo
Reply to  Bobo Gigi
6 months ago

The reason we destroy every other nation on the men’s side in terms of depth is the college system.

Joel
Reply to  Riccardo
6 months ago

Could be because you have a pathway for 18-22 year old male swimmers who aren’t yet ready for the senior team but are too old for the junior team. I don’t think it’s because of the scy pools as such.

exswimcoach
6 months ago

during his one year at WVU, Hunter said his goal was to be a professional swimmer according to what his brother Jake, a NCAA I All-American in the 100 BR, told me.

IceManYawns
6 months ago

I will shave my head if this man takes down Murphy’s 100 back record..

PFA
Reply to  IceManYawns
6 months ago

bookmarked, photographed, and screen-saved.

Jason
Reply to  IceManYawns
6 months ago

Get the razor’s ready. This kid is the real deal. Still very inexperienced and has front-end speed like we’ve never seen before. Wont be long before he builds a tank that can carry him a strong second half of the 100m. BWT a 52.2 at this stage of the season it pretty dam quick.

mcmflyguy
Reply to  IceManYawns
6 months ago

how do we know you are not already bald?

Mcfree
Reply to  mcmflyguy
6 months ago

W

Last edited 6 months ago by Mcfree
Mcfree
Reply to  mcmflyguy
6 months ago

pretty sure the guy is a half bald swammer looking for more mirror time.thats all

best to hunter

IceManYawns
Reply to  mcmflyguy
6 months ago

Now why would I say that if I didn’t have a full head of hair…it’s no fun if I already am bald that’s the whole goddamn point

About Yanyan Li

Yanyan Li

Although Yanyan wasn't the greatest competitive swimmer, she learned more about the sport of swimming through scoring countless dual meets, being a timer, and keeping track of her teammates' best times for three years as a team manager. She eventually ventured into the realm of writing and joined SwimSwam in …

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