By James Hemker
Tomorrow at noon, the Stanford men’s swimming and diving team (4-0, 3-0 PAC-12) will celebrate their senior class as the team competes in their final home meet of the year against No. 10 USC (4-0, 2-0). The seventh-ranked Cardinal will be racing in their first meet since they swept the Arizona schools two weeks ago.
The team will have an extra emotional boost with tomorrow being Senior Day. Matt Anderson, Cole Cogswell, Abrahm DeVine, Ryan Dudzinski, Jack Walsh and Brad Zdroik will all be recognized after four seasons of competing on the Farm. Fifth-year senior Patrick Conaton will also be racing for the final time in Avery. The seven men have combined for 29 All-America honors, and they have helped lead the team to two conference titles.
The class is unique in that they cover nearly every aspect of competition, from the four different strokes, to IMs, to sprints and middle-distance. Not only does their variance run the gamut, the class competes at the highest level. There is a good probability that the NCAA relay teams will be exclusively seniors.
The emotion of the day will provide a huge mental boost to the team. Head coach Ted Knapp said, “It’s going to be Senior Day, and we have guys that want to finish their careers with a big win against USC and maybe even a pool record.”
This meet will be the second of USC’s trip to the Bay Area. They will face California this afternoon, meaning that there is a possibility the team will suffer from race fatigue against the Cardinal.
The two schools are very close in the rankings, which is an accurate reflection of the two programs.
“USC is very similar to us,” Knapp said. “They have the personnel to win some events, and they are very good at relays. I think it is going to come down to depth, and our depth is better. I’m looking for a win and fast swimming.”
The seniors will be recognized around 11:45 a.m. PST in Avery, while the meet is set to start at noon.
Contact James Hemker at jahemker ‘at’ stanford.edu.