Texas Has Decisions to Make After Qualifying 26 Men For 2021 NCAAs

2021 NCAA MEN’S SWIMMING & DIVING CHAMPIONSHIPS

  • When: Wednesday, March 24 – Saturday, March 27, 2021
  • Where: Greensboro Aquatic Center / Greensboro, NC (Eastern Time Zone)
  • Defending champion: Cal (1x) – 2019 results
  • Streaming:
  • Championship Central
  • Live Results

Texas head coach Eddie Reese has one of those problems that pretty much every other coach in the NCAA would probably love to have. With the release of the NCAA pre-selection psych sheets, the Longhorns project to have an unprecedented 26 men qualify for the NCAA Championships later this month.

That’s a slight increase from last year, when Texas had 24 likely qualifiers, but didn’t even officially enter everyone, instead paring down the options even before the pre-selection psych sheets were released.

This year, the Texas coaching staff opted to go in a different direction, and ended up with 26 men under the cut line, plus another, Andrew Couchon, who currently ranks 11th on the alternative list.

Team rosters are capped at 18, with divers counting as 1/2. Texas generally brings at least 3, if not 4, scoring divers, so chances are that the Longhorns will only bring 16 swimmers. However, one interesting wrinkle this year is that alternates will be only called up to the meet within the first 24 hours. That seems to mean that if Texas only drops 8 men now, and waits to confirm its diving roster before dropping any other swimmers, a couple of possible alternates from other teams may miss out on their chance to swim.

Here’s a quick glance at how those 26 Longhorns rank by seed.

Name Event 1 Seed Event 2 Seed Event 3 Seed
Foster, Carson 1 4 7
Krueger, Daniel 1 10 32
Kibler, Drew 2 3 6
Pomajevich, Sam
3 18 N/A
Jiang, Alvin 5 7 11
Foster, Jake 5 10 45
Corbeau, Caspar 7 13 44
Johnston, David 7 20 22
Staka, Chris 8 15 25
Zettle, Alex 12 23 64
Vines, Braden 12 14 24
Larson, Peter 14 20 27
Katz, Austin 14 34 N/A
Sannem, Jake 15 69 84
Heasley, Ethan 15 16 30
Harder, Ethan 15 31 42
Crane, Cole 16 32 N/A
Koustik, Andrew 19 52 N/A
Park, Jason 19 29 N/A
Carrozza, Coby 21 21 34
Larson, Johnthomas
21 26 30
Van Zandt, Zac 23 40 N/A
Neri, Parker 26 33 N/A
Bowman, Luke 27 58 N/A
Scheinfeld, Charlie
31 65 N/A
Tannenberger, Matthew
32 48 N/A

On paper, the most logical cuts probably are the guys who are not seeded in the top 16 in any event, and there are nine guys in that category, which would put the Texas roster at 17. However, there’s at least a couple of wrinkles. Charlie Scheinfeld was Texas’ top breaststroker two years ago as a freshman, and his lifetime bests of 51.41/1:52.78 would easily score if he can match them this year. Additionally, Texas only has one other relay-ace breaststroker on the roster, Caspar Corbeau, and you have to wonder if Scheinfeld makes the roster partially as insurance against anything happening to Corbeau.

Another interesting case is Luke Bowman, who’s capable of going sub-42 on a free relay and earned an invite in the 100 free, in which he’s officially the 4th-fastest Longhorn this season. If Texas had a little more roster room, and if this was a normal year in which there were prelims relays, he might be earn a spot to help lighten the load on some of the Longhorns’ top swimmers, but his inclusion would definitely mean bumping out guys who are seeded to score, which seems tough to justify.

If Texas does end up with 16 swimmers, at least one Longhorn who is currently seeded in the top 16 will find himself in the very strange position of not making the NCAA roster. Ethan Harder and Cole Crane are seeded 15th and 16th in the 200 fly, respectively, but not projected to sore in any other event.

A few other notes about Texas event choices:

  • Senior Sam Pomajevich is only entered in the 100 fly and the 200 fly this year. As a freshman, Pomajevich, who’s known primarily as a flyer, surprisingly made the A-final in the 500 free, but hasn’t matched that feat again and was 0.03s of the NCAA B cut in that event this year. He also made the B-final of the 200 free that year, but has opted for the 100 fly this year.
  • Fellow senior Austin Katz is also out of the 500 free. He swam it at the 2019 NCAAs, hitting a lifetime best but failing to make finals, and then seemed hit or miss the rest of the meet. He was also entered in the 500 free last year before NCAAs were cancelled, but this year he will focus just on the 100 back and 200 back.

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bobthebuilderrocks
1 month ago

Wow, didn’t realize Katz was out of the 500 too.

Dan
Reply to  bobthebuilderrocks
1 month ago

Would probably have done it if it was after the backstrokes.
He has swum on Texas 800 Free Relays in the past and done that pretty fast as well.

Hswimmer
1 month ago

LET THEM ALL SWIM

Dan
Reply to  Hswimmer
1 month ago

Everybody knows the rules in advance of selection and hopefully they knows about the rules before selecting a school. It was a conscious choice to go to Texas and compete for one of the 16/18 available spots at NCAA’s. It should not have been a surprise for any of the swimmers that they might not get to go.

Hswimmer
Reply to  Dan
1 month ago

It’s just a comment since they all didn’t get to last year.

Ferb
Reply to  Dan
1 month ago

You must be fun at parties.

So confused.
Reply to  Dan
1 month ago

My kid ruled out Texas as a possible choice because of that reason. He said if he was fast enough to go to NCAA then he’d like the chance to swim.

PsychoDad
Reply to  So confused.
1 month ago

My kid rulled in Texas as a possible choice because swimming for Eddie Reese and swim with the best every day, becoming a longhorn and part of the greatest dynasty in swimming, and getting very good education, is way more important than swimming at NCAAs, whether he would be fast enough to swim at NCAAs or not.

Last edited 1 month ago by PsychoDad
Ferb
Reply to  So confused.
1 month ago

That’s absolutely a valid choice. And so is opting to be part of the Texas program, and setting a goal to be one of their top 16 swimmers.

tea rex
1 month ago

Enter Ethan Hardsley in 6 events and hope no one notices.

Snarky
Reply to  tea rex
1 month ago

Except there’s an ethan heasley and ethan harder so there’s that.

PVSFree
Reply to  Snarky
1 month ago

Even better, 6 events each. They can surely only catch one