Swimulator Conference Projections: SEC

by Andrew Mering 5

January 13th, 2018 College, News, SEC

With more than half the season and all the mid season rest meets complete, it’s time to start looking ahead to conference meets. Today: the SEC(ACCBig 10, Pac 12).

To project the meets, I’ve used SwimSwam’s Swimulator (available on the front page). This tool creates scores out a meet using top times so far this season (it can also do average times), while respecting plausible event combinations and trying to maximize each team’s points. It does not include diving. To get an idea of how we can expect these projected scores to change at the real meet, I compared last year’s projection as of today’s date to the real conference score at last year’s championship meet.


The SEC saw some wild point swings from the projection at this point last season. Missouri, the leader at this point last year, dropped 348 points to finish 5th. Florida, projected 3rd at this point last year, was 3rd and added 281.5 points to win. More so than the other conferences I’ve examined in this series, view the current Swimulator projection with a critical eye.

For example, Caeleb Dressel is currently only projected at 62 points. This is because at his mid season rest meet he only swam the 200 IM and 50 free. Swimulator won’t let him swim both of those events because they are back to back at a real championship meet. Instead it has him in the more realistic event combo of 50 free-100 free-100 fly. However, due to his unrested times in the 100 free and 100 fly he only projects to 30 points in those events. A realistic expectation would be at least 60 points between those two races.

Teams that took a big points jump are more likely to do so again the next year and visa versa for drop offs. Their philosophy for in season meets and training cycle timing generally remains consistent from year to year. An exception would be LSU. Last year they dropped off a lot at conference, but it would be surprising if they did so again this year. In the current projection they only have 41 individual points. This means that if they have a bad meet, there aren’t many points to drop and if they have a good meet, there are tons of points to gain due to their low seeds.

All that being said, Florida leads the current projection with 969 points. Combined with their history of point jumps at this meet, they’re the favorites at this point. Tennessee is a close second and gained a lot of points last year, but their mid season projection last year was less than half their current one. Their higher seeds this year aren’t coming from a bunch of freshmen either, it’s mostly returning swimmers, so them maintaining this position seems unlikely.

The leader in projected individual points is Hugo Gonzalez of Auburn with 96 points. He’s followed by Robert Howard of Alabama with 86 points, Mauro Castillo Luna of Texas A&M with 86, Brock Bonetti of Texas A&M with 82, and Mikel Schreuders of Missouri with 81.

2018 Projection 2017 Real Conf Score 2017 Real Conf minus Diving 2017 Projection as of 1/10/17 Diff Projection vs Real
Florida 969 1271.5 1170.5 889 281.5
Tennessee 955 770.5 627.5 426 201.5
Missouri 922 771 697 1045 -348
Georgia 901 985 951 1008 -57
Texas A&M 786 759 538 518 20
Auburn 762 925.5 844.5 787 57.5
Alabama 702 897 855 872 -17
South Carolina 533 696 636 503 133
Kentucky 329 481.5 386.5 394 -7.5
LSU 253 641 406 670 -264

SEC Women

The top of the SEC women’s projection looks very similar to last year. This year the top teams have 1248 and 1001 points. Last year at this time they had 1227 and 1007. The main difference is that the teams have traded places. Texas A&M leads Georgia this year, whereas Georgia led last year. Ultimately Texas A&M won last year’s meet by nearly 200 points. If we assume these teams approached their mid season meets the same way they did last year, Texas A&M should be the clear favorite. However there is a pretty obvious precedent for this type of lead being overturned. Diving was relatively even last year (A&M +22 over Georgia), and that seems likely to be repeated this year.

Projected individual scorers are led by Erika Brown of Tennessee with 96 points followed by Sydney Pickrem of Texas A&M with 90, Bethany Galat of Texas A&M with 88, Lisa Bratton of Texas A&M with 85, Asia Seidt of Kentucky with 84, and Megan Raab of Georgia with 83.

2018 Projection 2017 Real Conf Score 2017 Real Conf minus Diving 2017 Projection as of 1/10/17 Diff Projection vs Real
Texas A&M 1248 1304 1215 1007 208
Georgia 1001 1113 1046 1227 -181
Missouri 860 786 626 909 -283
Tennessee 793 855 754 490 264
Kentucky 790 938 821 743 78
Florida 596 624 530 493 37
Alabama 590 464 427 483 -56
Auburn 526 849 726 631 95
Arkansas 340 284 242 360 -118
South Carolina 305 505 349 273 76
LSU 244 550 450 535 -85
Vanderbilt 163 104 104 181 -77

If you want to look at the event by event projections or more detailed swimmer points projections, follow the links to the full Swimulator projections.  Articles on other D1 conferences are forthcoming (here’s the ACCBig 10Pac 12, and some D3 conferences). In the meantime, if you want to know the projections for other conferences feel free to run your own custom projection here.

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Heck fire when diving is added the Vols will crush the Gators. Does not appear to be even close. Coach Kredich divers are good for 225-240 points. Plus One Trick Pony Stevens, DeCoursey and the deepest D gang in the SEC. Could a trophy be coming back to Knoxville? Go VOLS!


My top 3 predictions.
1. Florida (Come on Dressel is so money)
2. Auburn (I think they barely beat Alabama Hugo is the game changer, can see him maybe winning the 200 back and placing top 3 in both IM)
3. Alabama (They are fast)
1. TAMU (Lose very little from last year and are crazy good)
2. Georgia (Smoliga was a huge hit but they are still solid)
3. Tennessee(They look good this year)

Corey Gibson

You can’t count the Vols out. Two national champions in the diving events (Colin Zeng and Liam Stone) and British National Team member (and Freshman) William Hallam. These Barefoot boys will take out the competition on the boards and possibly bring home another SEC championship for the Men’s team! GBO!

Colin Zeng is the real wildcard for Tennessee – both at the SEC and especially at the NCAA level. Remind us when we’re doing our more subjective predictions to not forget that they added him this year.


Glad to read others are seeing what can happen at BOC. Diving is a part of the Championship for sure.

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