USC got a big committment this week out of NOVA’s Blair Carnes, who collegeswimming.com rates as their top recruit out of the state of Virginia.
Carnes is a 1:02/2:10 breaststroker and a 2:04/4:20 IMer who comes out of a club program known for producing strong 200 and above swimmers. That makes a 200 IM/400IM/200 breast lineup a likely bet for championship meets. She joins a strong group of Trojan breaststrokers and will be a key replacement for Jessie Schmitt who graduates this year.
The Trojans will return Kasey Carlson next season as a senior, but will badly need the depth that Carnes will bring the following season. Carnes’ abilities in the 200, which is Carlson’s weaker distance (she usually swims the sprint freestyles instead), will also be very helpful to rounding out a complete team.
Carlson was the 2nd-fastest 100 breaststroker in the country last year, but unfortunately it didn’t happen at NCAA’s and she wound up 10th at the big meet. Aside from her, though, the Trojans will see a total turnover of their breaststroke group as they hand the reins to Carnes and 2012-2013 freshman Brianna Weinstein, as well as Olympic Trials finalist and transfer Andrea Kropp who will begin competing for the Trojans this season.
As recruiting season gets underway, we’re bound to start seeing more frequent commits. Getting early commits is always helpful for schools and coaches because then they know where they stand going into the rest of recruiting season.