Michigan Men Break NCAA Record in 800 Free Relay on Wednesday at Big Ten Championships

The Michigan men swooped in right behind an impressive NC State relay with a second “did you see that” moment of the night as the second round of NCAA Division I major conference championship meets kicked off on Wednesday.

The Wolverines swam a 6:09.85 in the 800 free relay to break the Big Ten, NCAA, and U.S. Open Records in the event, with a team of Anders NielsenMichael WynaldaJustin Glanda, and Connor Jaeger.

The splits (take note of Wynalda’s second leg – that’s a real split, and the exchange of .30 wasn’t even perfect):

  • Nielsen – 1:33.52
  • Wynalda – 1:30.60
  • Glanda – 1:33.26
  • Jaeger – 1:32.47

The old NCAA Record of 6:10.16 was set by the University of Texas back in 2009, with the team of Dave Walters (1:31.72), Ricky Berens (1:32.15), Scott Jostes (1:33.20), and Michael Klueh (1:33.09). That Texas relay was a little deeper than Michigan’s maybe, but didn’t have any one leg to compare to Wynalda’s.

Remember that last year, Michigan went into NCAA’s with the top seed in this relay only to get upended by the Florida Gators. This year, Michigan should again enter the meet with the top seed, but their gap will be significantly bigger – and remember that of their five relays, this was the only one that wasn’t very, very close to, or better, than seed at NCAA’s.

While Michigan swam the fastest 800 free relay ever, their lead-off leg Nielsen is Danish, so Texas’ relay will still stand as the American Record.

Note that Wynalda’s swim, as far as we can tell, was the fastest “through the water” (taking out reaction time) in history in the distance. The American Record on a flat-start is 1:31.31, and if Wynalda is as fast through the water on his individual race as he was in this relay, that record could be toast as well.

See our full day 1 recap here.

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7 years ago

That’s about as blue as it gets. Go blue. Blue.

C Martin
7 years ago

Video? (Bobo?:))

bobo gigi
Reply to  C Martin
7 years ago

I’m not the swimswam video specialist.
No trace of the race on youtube. Perhaps in the next hours.
I have a little day 1 recap about Michigan.

bobo gigi
7 years ago

Michael Wynalda is a beast. He looks giant on the picture.

Reply to  bobo gigi
7 years ago

He’s 6 foot 8 inches.

Reply to  newswim
7 years ago

At least. It will be hard to repeat at the end of the middle day in a few weeks, but what a swim! 129 is in store for the near future, especially with a top team like Michigan being so sharp at conference, where the relay is first day.

7 years ago

This relay will go even faster at NCAA’s and watch out for Florida!

7 years ago

It’s possible that UF could swap out Main and Cieslak for D’Arrigo and Werner depending on how they are swimming. Another great 800FR battle looms!

Sean Justice
Reply to  gosharks
7 years ago

First off, what a relay!! Congrats to UM. I really hope that there is a great 800 race at NCAAs. Florida can move some people around and get some time that way, but 4 seconds is quite a bit. I like the fact that Florida now sees what they are going to have to do to win again.

Again…1:30 split….crazy!!

David Berkoff
7 years ago

There wont be any B cut invites on relays this year. I count 21 automatic qualifying 200 medley relays and 20 automatic qualifying 800 free relays already. And we still haven’t seen PAC-10 or Ivies.

7 years ago

Is he the big guy in the photo? Just for scale, are the other swimmers 6’+?

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Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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