The 2010-2011 NCAA Swimming Season really ramps up this week, led-off by the first major dual meet of the season on Monday afternoon. The Virginia Cavaliers men and women will travel to Gainesville to match up with the Florida Gators.
The Virginia Men finished 10th at NCAA’s last year, and the Florida Men were 5th. The Gator women are the defending national champs, and the Lady Cavaliers were 9th. Here are some things to watch in each meet.
- Both squads are losing a valiant leader who was formerly the face of the program. Mei Christensen (Virginia) and Gemma Spofforth (Florida) were both backstrokers and keys to many relays. In the 100, Virginia and Lauren Smart will have an advantage, whereas in the 200, the edge on replacements should go to Teresa Crippen. Depending on the meet lineup that the coaches choose, this could be a swing point for the whole meet.
- Florida will be swimming their first dual meet coming off of their National Championship season. This team has a lot of versatility, and it will be interesting to see how they shuffle their lineup around.
- Watch for results from Virginia super-soph Lauren Perdue. She was our NCAA Freshman of the year last season based on her performance in the sprint freestyles, and is a National Title contender in the 50 and 100 this season.
- Scot Robison and Matt McLean are coming off of superb Long-Course Nationals performances. I am curious to see how well they will carry that swimming back into the NCAA season and short course distances.
- Conor Dwyer is the reigning NCAA Men’s Swimmer of the Year, and will be gunning to defend that title this season. After the graduation of Shaune Fraser, this is his team to lead.
- The Virginia men seem to be on an upward swing, and the Florida Men might be on a slight downtick after last season. Put those together, and this should be a very competitive meet. This is one where I’m confident that both coaches will have largely A-lineups running, because a win here would be a very nice way to start the season.
First start begins at 1 PM Eastern Time. We will recap the meet tonight, and stay tuned for later this week, when we will present highlights for the exciting week of action to come.