We’re at one of the most exciting times of the college swim season — the mid-season invites. For many teams, this is the first chance they’ve really had to swim suited up and (maybe) tapered and (maybe) shaved, although swim fans love to debate how rested and shaved their favorite teams actually were.
With at least five big invite meets this past weekend, plus plenty of smaller ones, there were plenty of big swims. But with likely top-10 teams swimming at different sites, and with different scoring formats at each invite, it can get a little tough to quantify just how well each school was swimming.
To help frame the discussion objectively, we used the SWIMS database to compile the top 16 times in each event from this weekend’s action, then scored out the hypothetical meet using the standard championship points structure.
Keep in mind that we compiled these rankings using only swims from this past weekend. This means there are a few big caveats here:
- These are not NCAA predictions, just a compiled ranking of this past weekend’s meets.
- That means these results don’t include teams like Cal, Texas, and Michigan.
- This does not take into account diving.
- In some cases, schools or swimmers had faster times from earlier in the season. These rankings don’t include those.
- These are not NCAA predictions.
- Some schools were missing key swimmers (e.g, Louisville was missing a big chunk of their roster).
- Relay DQ’s could have a big impact on these scorings, and in some cases schools may have totally skipped a relay (e.g., Virginia and the 800 free relay).
- These are not NCAA predictions.
All that being said, to the best of our ability, here’s how the men’s scores would look if you took all of the swims from this weekend and pretended they were all part of one meet.
|Air Force (M)||6||0||6|
While we only had Arizona State at #14 in our latest round of power rankings, the Sun Devil men dominated the weekend. Leon Marchand was the biggest name, as the French native had a stupendous performance in his first taper meet in yards. Not only did he swim to one of the fastest times ever in the 400 IM (3:35.62), he also put up the weekend-leading time in the 200 IM (1:40.80) and the 3rd-fastest time in the 200 fly (1:40.86).
Grant House was nearly as impressive, posting the weekend’s top time in the 200 free (1:31.73), the 2nd-fastest in the 200 IM,and the 3rd-fastest in the 100 free (42.06). Jack Dolan and David Schlicht had the weekend’s 2nd-fastest times in the 50 free (19.12) and the 400 IM (3:40.60), respectively.
The Sun Devil relays delivered this weekend as well, topping the weekend’s rankings in all three free relays (1:16.60. 2:47.43, 6:10.86). That 400 free relay time was over a second faster than any other team this weekend, while that 800 free relay time was three seconds faster than any other school’s time. Right now, it seems like there could be 13 or 14 teams who have the firepower to make the top 10 at NCAAs, and ASU appears to be moving its way up that pack.
Swimming at the Georgia Tech Invite, the Florida Gators got weekend-leading times from their two US Olympians, Kieran Smith and Bobby Finke. Smith had the weekend’s fastest time in the 500 free (4:10.72), and Finke did so in the 1650 (14:27.70), Each man is the U.S. Open record-holder in their respective event. The Gators also got a #2 performance from Alfonso Mestre, as well as a pair of top three times in two relays.
NC State’s depth was on display, as the Wolfpack finished just two points behind Florida in this hypothetical scoring. Kacper Stokowski had the weekend’s fastest time in the 100 back (44.79), while the 400 medley relay also picked up a weekend-leading time (3:04.02). The Wolfpack also had the weekend’s 2nd-fastest times the 400 free, 800 free, and 200 medley relays.
Indiana finished another 30 points behind NC State in our hypothetical computations. The Hoosiers had one weekend-leading performance, courtesy of Brendan Burns in the 200 back (1:40.27), as well as several strong relay performances, including #2 times in the 200 free and 400 medley relays.
Other top times from the weekend:
- Alabama finished 6th in the hypothetical team standings, thanks in large part to some ace relays, including the #1 time this weekend in the 200 medley relay (1:23.38), thanks especially to fast splits by backstroker Matthew Menke (20.60) and breaststroker Derek Maas (22.97).
- The larger swimming world may know Russian Olympian Andrei Minkaov best for his long course 100 fly, but the Stanford freshman actually had the best time this weekend in the 100 freestyle (41.69). Overall, the Cardinal finished 6th in our points tally.
- USC had not one, but two, tops times this weekend, as the breaststroke due of Trent Pellini and Ben Dillard had the fastest showings in the 100 (51.28) and the 200 breast (1:52.44), respectively. Notre Dame’s Josh Bottelberghe tied Dillard’s time in the 200 breast.
- The ACC got in some fast butterfly swims, thanks to Virginia Tech’s Youssef Ramadan‘s weekend-leading time in the 100 fly and the 2nd-fastest in the 100 free (41.98). Georgia Tech’s Christian Ferraro also put up the top time in the 200 fly (1:40.33).