Leon Marchand Enters Both IMs, 200 Breast at NCAAs

by Michael Hamann 8

March 08th, 2022 College, Pac-12


The NCAA released pre-selection psych sheets for the men’s NCAA Division I Championships this morning, revealing the event lineup for the nation’s top swimmers. Arizona State freshman Leon Marchand, who joined the Sun Devils from France this fall, will swim both IMs and the 200 breast at this year’s NCAAs. 

  • For SwimSwam’s recap of the pre-selection psych sheets, click here
  • For our projected cut line recap, click here.

Prior to joining the Sun Devils, Marchand was one of the top IM swimmers in the world, breaking the French national record in the LCM 400 IM with a 4:09.65 at French Nationals and finishing in 6th at the Tokyo Olympics in that event, while also competing in the 200 IM and 200 fly in Tokyo.

While some international swimmers have struggled to translate long course success into short course speed, Marchand has had no trouble with the transition during his short time in Tempe. He enters these NCAA Championships as the top seed in both the 200 and 400 IM while also coming in as the fourth seed in the 200 breast. 

While the IMs were a lock for the French freshman, Marchand had a choice to make between the 200 fly and 200 breast on the meet’s final day, with the latter winning out. 

At Arizona State’s midseason meet, Marchand opted to swim the 200 fly over the 200 breast, posting a 1:40.86, a time that currently sits 13th in the country. Despite competing in the 200 fly midseason, the versatile Marchand decided to try his hand at the 200 breast at Pac 12s last weekend, and the switch paid off with him winning the title ahead of Cal’s Hugo Gonzalez and Reece Whitley with a 1:50.39. He now enters NCAAs as the fourth seed behind Minnesota’s Max McHugh, Penn’s Matt Fallon and Whitley. 

Internationally, Marchand has had the IMs as his staple but has also competed in both the 200 breast and 200 fly. In 2019 at the age of 17, Marchand won the bronze medal in the 200 breast at the LCM European Juniors, with what is still his lifetime best of 2:12.17. Last summer, Marchand was the French national champion in the 200 fly, posting a 1:55.40, a time that tied him for 20th in the world last year.  He finished just off of his lifetime best in Tokyo, qualifying for the semi-finals and finishing 14th.

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10 months ago

jack of all trades, master of all

10 months ago

Marchand seems very Seliskarian in short course.

Sean Justice
10 months ago

he versatile Marchand decided to try his hand at the 200 breast at Pac 12s last weekend, and the switch paid off with him finishing runner-up to Cal’s Reece Whitley with a 1:50.39. 

Didn’t he win the 200 Breast

Reply to  Sean Justice
10 months ago

He did, Whitley’s time is from a different meet

Kyle Sockwell
10 months ago

FYI: Marchand beat Whitley at PACs, not runner-up.

Kyle Sockwell
10 months ago

400 IM record is in danger

10 months ago

Marchand – who pre ASU must have had an LCM focus (and so less on underwaters) – saw Albiero’s 2 fly and said no thanks I’ll take my chances in the 2 breast.

Swimmer Wilson
10 months ago

Didn’t Marchand beat Whitley at Pac-12s?