USC Quarterback Caleb Williams Says Swimming Is Harder than Football

USC starting quarterback Caleb Williams recently said on a podcast with fellow teammate and quarterback Mo Hasan that swimming is harder than football.

While on the podcast, Williams also said he swam in high school, specializing in freestyle and backstroke. Although a quick search could not find any records of Williams swimming for Gonzaga College High School, the school has a history of good swimmers.

The school is currently home to Georgia commit Jack Moloney, who is in his senior year. The school also graduated numerous swimmers that went on to swim in college this past year. Graduating in May 2022 and swimming in college are Mac Marsh (Cornell), Collin McKenzie (NC State), and JT Ewing (NC State). In 2020, Ollie Bernasek graduated from Gonzaga College HS and went on to swim at Notre Dame.

Williams said that swimming tests everything. His teammates gave him a rebuttal that football has defense, a big crowd, and 300-pound players coming to tackle.

Williams is currently a sophomore at USC. He transferred after last season at Oklahoma, following head coach Lincoln Riley from Norman to Los Angeles.

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1 year ago

As a lifelong swimmer who never played football beyond elementary school flag football, I’d just thank Caleb for showing some respect to a sport that oftentimes was the butt of jokes at the High School level.

Honestly watching the football team practice back in the day I was happy enough to be jumping in the water instead (helped that I was in Fresno in the summer).

1 year ago

How hard is swimming? It depends on how much some one can swim and how much they can try. It can be brutal for that world triathlon swimmer who only gets 30 strokes per minute and cannot drive their HR above 140. Race with no base. Try it. Compared with a more experienced swimmer who maxes their HR and churns out 60 SMP or much higher. Swimming is a fixie. If you wish to go faster, you much decrease strokes per lap and increase strokes per minute. For someone who runs 40 yard sprints, football players. Why should swimming be “harder?” Challenge involves one’s heart, commitment, skill and experience. Swimming is now harder for me than ever before. Pursuit of… Read more »

1 year ago

Different types of hard, it takes a special kind of person/mentality to get hit over and over again and love it, but the same can be said for hitting 70-100k yards in a week to maybe drop a tenth

1 year ago

And water polo is harder than swimming. Not just physical demands but WP is a contact sport.

Jesse J
1 year ago

Oh, how terrible to have a crowd show up to watch you perform! Lol.

Zaga Alum
1 year ago

Caleb broke his ankle before he was able to swim in a meet at Gonzaga. He was on the team and was fast and of course athletic.

James Palmer, Jr.
1 year ago

Not physically but cardio, Yes. Especially if you’re a Butterflier or Individual Medely swimmer.

Reply to  James Palmer, Jr.
1 year ago

Trying to understand how this has 16 downvotes. I think by ‘physically’ the P means physical punishment. Sure swimming tests the limits of our musculature, but the sport is more aerobic and anaerobic conditioning and the mental discipline of keeping our stroke in that window, but indeed there aren’t 10 people trying to mash us every time we hit the water….

Atlas Stone Carry Enjoyer
1 year ago

Must be the CTE talking

About Anya Pelshaw

Anya Pelshaw

Anya has been with SwimSwam since June 2021 as both a writer and social media coordinator. She was in attendance at the 2022 and 2023 Women's NCAA Championships writing and doing social media for SwimSwam. Currently, Anya is pursuing her B.A. in Economics and a minor in Government & Law at …

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