Is Nathan Adrian The Most Consistent 100m Sprinter in U.S. History? GMM presented by

Gold Medal Minute presented by

While I love 50m free, the 100m is crucial,  the discipline that delivers hardware in the most exciting races of the Olympic Games–the 4×100 freestyle and medley relays.

Nathan Adrian  has won gold in the last three Olympic Games. He has 32 international medals, 20 of them gold. He’s been incredibly consistent, especially in the blue ribbon event, the 100 meter freestyle.

Focusing on 100m free in U.S. swimming history, how does Adrian compare to sprinting greats like Matt Biondi and Gary Hall Jr.?   Biondi (11 Olympic medals) and Hall (10 Olympic medals) tops Nathan (8 Olympic medals) on medal count, but, in my opinion, Nathan’s been more consistent in the 100m free.  It’s that third trip to the Olympic stage where Adrian has the edge, getting on the podium and playing a big role on the relays.

Is Adrian the most consistent 100-man in U.S. history?  What do you think?  

Is the comparison even fair?  Biondi suffered from a lack of NGB financial support during his era.  

Should Jason Lezak be on the list? He made the Olympic podium once in the 100m free, winning bronze, but he was a factor on relays across 2000, 04′, ’08 and ’12, and, of course, his ’08 anchor is the greatest swim of all-time. Maybe Lezak is the most consistent 100-man in U.S. history.  

I’m Team Adrian, but I think a lot readers will challenge my argument.

Lastly, Caeleb Dressel? Does anyone want to look into the crystal ball on this guy? Where’s he going to be by 2024?  I only ask for fun because I did not predict his 2017 Worlds performance. 

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This is a Gold Medal Media production presented by Host Gold Medal Mel Stewart is a 3-time Olympic medalist and the co-founder of, a Swimming News website.

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58 Comments on "Is Nathan Adrian The Most Consistent 100m Sprinter in U.S. History? GMM presented by"

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He’s been going strong for a long time. How many male swimmers has the USA had that have competed at a high level through age 29 (he’s 29 years old)? Phelps, Lochte, Jones, Ervin, who else am I missing?



Plummer came on to the scene at a high level too late to be considered. Just because he was good when he was old (which is awesome don’t get me wrong) doesn’t mean he was consistently good over a long number of years. Plummer only was good for 6 and he had too many finals swims out of the medals (outlier being the Olympic final) to be considered with the other names.

Gary Hall Jr won Olympic gold at 29/30 didn’t he? Don’t know about his HS career though.

Ervin didn’t actually compete ‘Through’ age 29. He came back to swimming at age 29

If I had to pick someone to swim a 47 in the 100free to save my life I would pick Nathan every time.

since budapest i would pick dressel

Nooooo way do you bet your life on Dressel over Adrian? If you asked me to bet my life on someone going 46s, Dressel all day… But you just know when Adrian turns up he will go 47something.

You can’t buy that consistency, no matter how good you are.

I think you have to throw Jason Lezak into the mix. He showed steady improvement and consistency from 2000-2008, including his other worldly Beijing split

About Gold Medal Mel Stewart

Gold Medal Mel Stewart

MEL STEWART Jr., aka Gold Medal Mel, won three Olympic medals at the 1992 Olympic Games. Mel's best event was the 200 butterfly. He is a former World, American, and NCAA Record holder in the 200 butterfly. As a writer/producer and sports columnist, Mel has contributed to Yahoo Sports, Universal Sports, …

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