The Texas Longhorn men published their 2021-2022 roster yesterday, and there was at least one fairly big surprise: former University of Denver standout Cameron Auchinachie now appears on the defending champs’ roster as a grad student.
Auchinachie is a relatively rare example of a mid-major transfer who could still make an immediate impact at a powerhouse like Texas. He’s a sprint freestyler, and as a sophomore at the 2019 NCAA Championships, Auchinachie finished 16th in the 50 free (with a 19.37 after going 19.13 in prelims) and 11th in the 100 free (with a 42.13 after going 41.81 in prelims).
Lifetime Bests (SCY):
- 50 free – 19.13
- 100 free – 41.81
- 200 free – 1:34.24
- 100 back – 46.23
Those prelims times from 2019 remain his lifetime bests, but he matched his 19.13 in the fall of 2019 at the Big Al Invite. He didn’t swim any short course during the 2020-2021 season, ultimately dropping off the team roster after a huge percentage of the team was suspended for violating the school’s COVID-19 regulations. Last year was Auchinachie’s traditional senior year, but because he didn’t compete, this should be his final season of eligibility (athletes who didn’t compete last season don’t get the ‘extra’ year of eligibility afforded by the NCAA because of COVID).
Auchinachie’s 19.13 lifetime best would’ve ranked him 2nd on the Longhorns roster last year, behind Daniel Krueger’s 19.04, and his 41.81 would’ve ranked him 3rd, behind Krueger (41.33) and Drew Kibler (41.45). On most teams, a 1:34.24 in the 200 free would put you into consideration for the 800 free relay, but Texas has at least a quartet of men who’ve been 1:32 or better. However, his lifetime best of 46.23 in the 100 back would’ve ranked him 4th last year, with two of the men ahead him, Chris Staka and Austin Katz, having now graduated.
In October 2020, the NCAA granted all winter sport athletes the option to use an extra year of eligibility following complications from the COVID-19 pandemic. Under normal circumstances, Division I student-athletes have a 5-year window during which they can use up their four seasons of eligibility. However, given the current situation with COVID-19, student-athletes of all class years have been offered an additional season of eligibility, regardless of where they are in their 5-year window. For a detailed breakdown on what the stakes are surrounding a 5th-year decision in 2021, click here.
Barring any additions to the Texas roster, Auchinachie and Alvin Jiang appear to be the only 5th years competing for the Longhorns this upcoming season. If Auchinachie can match his best times, he should help Texas out on the sprint free relays, where they’ll need to replace two legs on each relay.
While we reported yesterday that Texas A&M star Shaine Casas plans to transfer, possibly to Texas, he doesn’t appear on the Longhorns’ roster at this time.
Other Texas roster notes:
- Freshman diver Manuel Borowski is joining the Longhorns. He finished 7th in the 3m event at the 2018 Junior World Championships.
- Brian Jiang, Alvin’s brother, has transferred from Michigan State after the school announce they’d be cutting the swimming and diving program. He’s primarily a sprint freestyler, with lifetime bests of 21.19/46.60.
- Senior Matthew Willenbring remains on the team roster after not competing at all last season.
- Former Longhorn sprint star Brett Ringgold will be a volunteer assistant coach for the upcoming season.
- Laurent Gosselin-Paradis, a World University Games medal-winning diver from Canada, will again not join the team for the 2021-2022 season.