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Norwegian national team member Truls Wigdel has committed to the USC class of 2023. He’ll join the Trojans this fall. He’s a mid-distance specialist with range from the 100 to the mile, and he helped set the Norwegian national record in the 4×200 free relay at the 2016 European Championships.
“I’ve dreamt of a place like USC since I started swimming. Great facilities, an amazing coaching staff, a highly motivated training group as ambitious as myself and a great university with high rated academics. It’s crazy that I’ll be able to live my dream for the next years and I can’t wait to be a part of USC’s great Olympic history.”
TOP TIMES (LCM/SCY converted)
- 100 free – 50.92 / 43.80
- 200 free – 1:48.85 / 1:33.62
- 400 free – 3:53.24 / 4:16.04
- 800 free – 8:11.79 / 9:11.02
- 1500 free – 15:36.78 / 15:10.54
Wigdel certainly has range to the mile, but his 200/500 combo is his most lethal, and his 100 free certainly has potential to make him a Townley Haas-like (or Cristian Quintero-like) ((or Reed Malone-like)) freestyler: great in the mid-distance space with the ability to help on the longer two free relays.
When he went 1:48.85 in the 200 free in April of 2018, he broke Norwegian distance star Henrik Christiansen’s national junior record by about a quarter of a second. That time, still his best, is also only a quarter of a second shy of Gard Kvale’s senior national record of 1:48.57 from 2009. For some reference to American history, his 1:48.85 would tie for 14th in 17-18 age group history with eventual Olympic gold medalists David Walters and Blake Pieroni.
Wigdel looks to be a huge get for the Trojans. Last season, they were led by freshmen in Wigdel’s best events: Alexei Sancov in the 200 free (1:34.22) and 500 free Pac-12 Champ Victor Johansson in the 500 free (4:13.30) and mile (14:43.21). Sancov and Johansson were the only USC swimmers under 1:36.0 and 4:20.0, in the 200 free and 500 free, respectively, last season. They also had only two men break 44.0 in the 100 free, meaning he could hop on the 400 free relay right off the bat depending on how things shake out.
Wigdel joins the Trojan’s big class of 2023 with Jan Collazo, Andy Lee, David Mertz, Dominic Margarino, Ivan Puskovitch, Jack Kirby, Max Saunders, Paul Retterer, Ryan Peterson, and Trent Martinez as well as transfer Santi Corredor from Florida.
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