Murphy: “I don’t need a certain swim to prove to myself that I’m good” (Video)


Reported by Lauren Neidigh.


  • World Record: Aaron Peirsol, 1:51.92, 2009
  • American Record: Aaron Peirsol, 1:51.92, 2009
  • Championship Record: Aaron Peirsol, 1:53.08, 2009
  • U.S. Open Record: Aaron Peirsol, 1:53.08, 2009
  1. GOLD: Ryan Murphy– 1:54.15
  2. SILVER: Jacob Pebley– 1:55.68
  3. BRONZE: Austin Katz– 1:56.12
  4. FOURTH: Clark Beach– 1:57.41

Olympians Jacob Pebley and Ryan Murphy battled mid-pool, with Pebley leading by hundredths halfway. Murphy used a huge underwater to break ahead right off the wall after the flip, building a body-length lead to win it in 1:54.15. This bodes well for Murphy, who had an off summer in Budapest. The only time he’s ever been faster was when he won the backstrokes in Rio. He was half a second shy of his lifetime best tonight.

Pebley held on for 2nd in 1:55.68, while NCAA champ Austin Katz finished 3rd in 1:56.12, knocking a few tenths off his best. He’s now within 3 tenths of the all-time top 10 Americans list. Like Katz, Clark Beach is coming off a successful first NCAA season. Beach picked up a 4th place finish in a lifetime best 1:57.41, just holding off  fellow rising sophomore Bryce Mefford (1:57.46) down the stretch as both beat their lifetime bests from prelims.

Carson Foster swam his lifetime best 1:57.70 this morning to land just over half a second shy of Aaron Peirsol’s 15-16 NAG Record. Tonight, he touched 7th in 1:58.18 behind Daniel Carr (1:57.91). With his time from this morning, he’s the 3rd fastest ever in his age group behind only Murphy and Peirsol.

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25 free champ

To me Piersol is the best backstroker ever. Murphy could be there one day.


Greatest is different than best. Murphy is an objectively better backstroker, but Piersol was “greater” (at least at this moment)


I would argue that the competitive landscape is different today as compared to when Aaron was at the top. It’s more competitive today, particularly internationally so I think Ryan’s challenges are greater which will prove over time that he may be the best. Not taking anything away from Aaron, because he was awesome, just saying the sport is changing faster these days.


agreed ….


Pretty cool to see Murphy feel so much ownership and pride of the Cal Swimming tradition. His talk about welcoming the freshmen and the development of the program shows how selfless he is and his loyalty to the Bears!

About Coleman Hodges

Coleman Hodges

Coleman started his journey in the water at age 1, and although he actually has no memory of that, something must have stuck. A Missouri native, he joined the Columbia Swim Club at age 9, where he is still remembered for his stylish dragon swim trunks. After giving up on …

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