….Swimming World is reporting that Mark Schubert has taken a leave of absence as the head of the USA-Swimming National Team Program. They didn’t find out too many details why, but we do know that it didn’t have anything to do with a scandal or sexual abuse or anything of that nature. There has been speculation that it has to do with the failed APP plan that Schubert was a vocal proponent of, but at this point that seems to be just speculation. More details will surely come out over the next few days. Jim Wood, who is the outgoing USA-Swimming President, has been named the interim National Team Director.
…Speaking of the APP, after some (surely heated) debate, a watered down version of the plan has been prepared for House approval. Again, we might not hear details about this plan until after it is ratified by USA-Swimming to be sent along to the USOC, but it doesn’t sound like it’s going to make many people happy.
…David “The Swim Geek” Rieder reports that Josh Schneider has won his appeal to count his 50 free time from LC Nationals in August. For those who don’t remember, earlier in that session, Schneider skipped the 100 fly without properly scratching the race. The claim was that he didn’t realize he was entered in the event. Failure to properly scratch an event results in an automatic DQ for the next event. Schneider and his reps argued that because he missed suit-check, he was already DQ”ed from the 100 fly and his failure to scratch was a moot point, and he was allowed to compete in the 50 free final under protest, where he tied with Cullen Jones for second. USA-Swimming relented, and allowed his time, which seems to have been the proper decision under the letter, if not the spirit, of the law. Regardless, Schneider’s participation with the National Team will be delayed, because later in the meet he broke his hand while finishing the 100 free. Ouch. That’s serious speed.
…Masters Swimming will have probably its hugest stage ever at the 2012 Summer Nationals. The Qwest Center in Omaha, an 18,000 seat basketball arena, will be converted to a pool for the second straight Olympic Trials in 2012, which will run June 25-July 2. Given that it’s full-time tenants are college basketball, volleyball and minor-league hockey teams that are on break during the summer, USMS was able to negotiate with facility management to leave the trials pool set up for another week, where Masters Summer Nationals will be held from July 5th-9th. Great job by USMS officials to get such an awesome venue for an awesome event.