Off the Blocks #11: U-M Eyes 35th Conference Crown at Big Ten Championships
MGOBLUE Dan Madwed
MGOBLUE
Dan Madwed
MGOBLUE

Feb. 21, 2011

Coch Mike Bottom Big Ten Preview

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
Wed-Sat., Feb. 23-26, 11 a.m./6:30 p.m. CST -- at Big Ten Championships (Minneapolis, Minn.)
Live Results | Live Video | Championships Central | TV: Big Ten Network (Tape Delay)
gophersports.com | Record Book | Tickets

The No. 9-ranked University of Michigan men's swimming and diving team (8-2-1, 5-1 Big Ten) continues its quest for a 35th conference title at the 2011 Big Ten Championships running Wednesday through Saturday (Feb 23-26) at Minnesota's University Aquatic Center in Minneapolis, Minn. Wednesday will only feature an evening session that begins at 6:30 p.m. CST. The remaining three days will begin with preliminaries at 11 a.m. CST to set up finals, which begin at 6:30 p.m. CST each night. Michigan has won two of the last three Big Ten crowns and has been amongst the top three finishers every season since 1977-78. The Big Ten Network will air the meet on a tape delay on Sunday, March 6, at 10 a.m.

All-session tickets can be purchased online at gophersports.com or by calling the Golden Gopher Ticket Office at 1-800-UGOPHER. Ticket prices for the Big Ten Championships are $40 for an all-session adult ticket, $25 for student and senior citizens. Single-session tickets will be available the week of the event. All seats are general admission.

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

Wednesday, February 23
6:30 p.m. CST - Finals
200-yard Medley Relay
3M Synchronized Diving - Exh.
800-yard Freestyle Relay

Thursday, February 24
11 a.m. CST - Trials
500-yard Freestyle
200-yard Individual Medley
50-yard Freestyle
One-Meter Diving

6:30 p.m. CST - Finals
500-yard Freestyle
200-yard Individual Medley
50-yard Freestyle
One-Meter Diving
400-yard Medley Relay

Friday, February 25
11 a.m. CST - Trials
400-yard Individual Medley
100-yard Butterfly
200-yard Freestyle
100-yard Breaststroke
100-yard Backstroke
Three-Meter Diving

6:30 p.m. CST - Finals
200-yard Freestyle Relay
400-yard Individual Medley
100-yard Butterfly
200-yard Freestyle
100-yard Breaststroke
100-yard Backstroke
Three-Meter Diving

Saturday, February 26
11 a.m. CST - Trials
200-yard Backstroke
100-yard Freestyle
200-yard Breaststroke
200-yard Butterfly
Platform Diving

3:45 p.m. CST
1,650-yard Freestyle (all but last heat)

6:30 p.m. - Finals
1,650-yard Freestyle (final heat)
200-yard Backstroke
100-yard Freestyle
200-yard Breaststroke
200-yard Butterfly
Platform Diving - Final
400-yard Freestyle Relay

FLIP TURNS
U-M at the Big Ten Championships -- The Wolverines lead the conference in both team (34), individual (451) and relay (108) titles. Of the 451 individual championships, 325 are individual swimming victories, 108 are relay wins and 18 have come in the diving well. The 200-yard breaststroke (38 titles) has been U-M's most successful individual event, while the 400-yard freestyle relay has been the most decorated relay team (32 titles). Michigan Men hold eight Big Ten Championships records, with current junior Dan Madwed (Stamford, Conn./Towson) owning the 200-yard freestyle (1:33.90) and 200-yard butterfly (1:42.11) records.

Leaders and Best -- A young Michigan squad will be anchored by three returning All-Big Ten first team honorees and a pair of second team recipients. Seniors Neal Kennedy (Chanhassen, Minn./Chaska) and James Ridgeway (Chicago, Ill./Saint Patrick) and junior Dan Madwed (Stamford, Conn./Towson) all earned first team honors for their role in U-M's four relay championships in 2010. Madwed, who also was recognized for his individual titles, is the lone two-time selection, having also earned first team honors in 2009. Sophomores Ryan Feeley (Rye, N.Y./Rye) and Hassaan Abdel Khalik (Mississauga, Ontario/Silverthorn Collegiate) are looking to build on second team selections from their rookie campaigns.

Title Defense I -- Dan Madwed is seeking to repeat as 200-yard butterfly champion and his third consecutive Big Ten title in the 200-yard freestyle. Madwed holds the Big Ten Championships record in both events, setting the butterfly record of 1:42.11 last season and the freestyle record of 1:33.90 in 2009. He went undefeated in the 200-yard butterfly during the dual-meet season, going 8-0 in four races. Madwed is trying to join Gustavo Borges (4, 1992-95) and Dan Ketchum (3, 2001-02, '04) as the lone Wolverines to win the 200 freestyle three times in a career.

Title Defense II -- Michigan will be defending four championships won by departed Wolverines. Chris Brady (2007-10) won the last two 100-yard butterfly titles and Tyler Clary (2008-10) topped the podium in the 200-yard backstroke, 200-yard individual medley and 400-yard individual medley in 2009 and 2010. The Maize and Blue is also the defending champion in the 400- and 800-yard freestyle relays and the 200- and 400-yard medley relays.

Follow My Lead -- Michigan holds seven individual Big Ten Championships records to go along with the 800-yard freestyle relay (6:15.80, 2010) standard. Minneapolis has been considerably kind to U-M's distance swimmers as Chris Thompson (1998-2001) and Peter Vanderkaay (2003-06) set the 500- (4:12.37, 2001) and 1,650-yard (14:31.15, 2005) freestyle records, respectively, when Minnesota previously hosted the championships. Junior Dan Madwed owns the top times in the 200-yard freestyle (1:33.90, 2009) and 200-yard butterfly (1:42.11, 2010); former Wolverine Chris Brady (2007-10) set the 100-yard butterfly (45.45, 2009) record, while his teammate Tyler Clary (2008-10) established the 200-yard (1:42.68, 2010) and 400-yard (3:38.03, 2009) individual medley marks.

400 Individual Michigan -- The 400-yard individual medley has been dominated by the Maize and Blue over the last two decades. A Wolverine swimmer has been atop the podium in each of the last 13 seasons dating back to Andy Potts' (1996-99) 1998 title. Michigan has won 17 of the last 20 races in the event at the Big Ten Championships. Freshman Kyle Whitaker's (Chesterton, Ind./Chesterton) season best of 3:47.62 represents the conference's top time heading into championships.

Streaking Across the Water -- In addition to Michigan's 13-year string in the 400-yard individual medley, the Maize and Blue will be looking to add on to several other streaks. The Wolverines have won 10 straight 800-yard freestyle relays; have claimed each of the last five 200-yard freestyle crowns and eight of the first 10 titles of the 21st century; are the three-time defending champion in the 200-yard individual medley, 400-yard freestyle relay and 400-yard medley relay and have won the last two 100-yard butterfly and 200-yard backstroke crowns.

Dual for the Crown -- Of Michigan's conference-leading 34 team titles, eight have come when the Wolverines had two or more losses on their dual-meet record. The most-recent example came in 2002-03 when the Maize and Blue entered the conference championships with an 8-2 record and knocked off two-time defending champion Minnesota. In 1988-89, the Wolverines claimed the Big Ten Championships crown after going 5-1 in conference during the dual-meet season, the only U-M squad to have a Big Ten loss -- also to Indiana -- and go on to win the crown. That team went on to finish third at the NCAA Championships.

Rank and File -- Michigan jumped up four spots to the No. 9 ranking in the fifth CSCAA Coaches Poll of the season, released on Feb. 9. The Wolverines, who began the season ranked No. 6, are the highest rated of six Big Ten teams in the top 25.
[ Complete Rankings ]

NCAA QUALIFIERS TO DATE (Season Bests)
Hassaan Abdel Khalik: 500-yard freestyle (consideration)
Kyle Duckitt:
100-yard breaststroke (consideration)
Ryan Feeley:
500-yard freestyle (consideration); 1,650-yard freestyle (consideration)
Sean Fletcher: 100-yard butterfly (consideration)
Alexander Hoff: 200-yard backstroke (consideration)
Connor Jaeger:
500-yard freestyle (consideration)
Neal Kennedy: 100-yard butterfly (consideration); 200-yard individual medley (consideration)
Dan Madwed:
200-yard freestyle (consideration); 100-yard butterfly (consideration); 200-yard butterfly (consideration); 200-yard individual medley (consideration)
Jared Miller:
400-yard individual medley (consideration)
Andrew Novakoff:
500-yard freestyle (consideration)
Miguel Ortiz: 50-yard freestyle (consideration)
Sean Ryan: 500-yard freestyle (consideration); 1,650-yard freestyle (consideration)
Tony Wahl: 500-yard freestyle (consideration); 200-yard butterfly (consideration)
Sam Wensman: 100-yard breaststroke (consideration)
Kyle Whitaker:
200-yard butterfly (consideration); 200-yard individual medley (consideration); 400-yard individual medley (consideration)
Roman Willets: 200-yard freestyle (consideration)
Michael Wynalda: 200-yard freestyle (consideration)
Relays: 200-yard freestyle (consideration), 400-yard freestyle (consideration), 800-yard freestyle (consideration), 200-yard medley (consideration), 400-yard medley (consideration)

TWITTER-TASTIC
Michigan men's swimming and diving is now on Twitter. Sign up and follow the Wolverines (Michigan_swim) with up-to-the-minute news and information throughout the season and beyond. Twitter is a free casual, online social network that is designed to connect businesses, organizations and individuals. Each Twitter post (or "tweet") can be received on a user's cell phone via text or on the web.

GET SOCIAL
Michigan men's swimming and diving is also on Facebook. Connect with the program, alumni and fans by clicking the "Like" button at facebook.com/michiganmensswimming. Facebook is a social network service and website with more than 500 million active users.

2010-11 YEARBOOK RECORD BOOK
The University of Michigan athletics department will no longer print media guides. U-M fans and media can still obtain all the information they're used to, only now it's available online. Each of our varsity athletic teams will have a Record Book and a Yearbook. If you're looking for in-depth historical information, statistics, records, archives, etc., the Record Book is what you'll need. For more of a general overview of a team, the staff and student-athletes, check out the Yearbook. [ Publications ]

CANHAM NATATORIUM
Considered one of the finest college-owned swimming and diving facilities when it was constructed in 1988 at a cost of approximately $8.5 million, a renovation in 1998 upgraded Canham to a state-of-the-art swimming and diving facility. The 59,000-square foot natatorium houses a 50-meter pool, eight lanes wide, that can be divided into two separate 25-yard pools by movable bulkheads. The Dick Kimball Diving Pool, located at the west end of the facility, features an Olympic Tower, one- and three-meter springboards and a hot tub. On the east end of the mezzanine level is one of two full-service training rooms on the U-M athletic campus. One of Michigan's three weight training and conditioning facilities is also located in the natatorium.

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
Sunday, March 6, Noon -- at Ohio State Last Ditch NCAA Qualifier (Columbus, Ohio)
Thu-Sat., March 10-12, All Day -- at NCAA Zone C Diving Championships (Columbus, Ohio)
Thu-Sat., March 24-26, Time TBA -- at NCAA Championships (Minneapolis, Minn.)

Contact: Ryan Sosin (734) 763-4423