Men's Swim Recruiting 2018

UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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CAL OBTAINS VERBAL COMMITMENT FROM LOCAL FREE/FLYER DANIEL O'CONNELL



https://swimswam.com/cal-obtains-verbal-commitment-local-freeflyer-daniel-oconnell/

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OBear073akaSMFan
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Good to see them get another local recruit! Possible upside where in the Swimswan article that he has only committed to swimming year round for the last 2 years.
PalyBear
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"O'Connell is a senior at De La Salle High School in Concord. He swims with the Crow Canyon Sharks Swim Team under coach Ethan Hall and coach Joe Natina."

Also, Sharks Head Coach Ethan Hall is Natalie Coughlin's husband. So there's that Cal connection too.
UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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Legit commit??

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https://www.collegeswimming.com/swimmer/413394/

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UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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Best Freshman Recruiting Class Of All Time?



http://www.floswimming.com/article/48200-best-freshman-recruiting-class-of-all-time
UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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UrsusArctosCalifornicus said:

Looks like Reece & the 2018 men's recruits will be at the 'SC game this Sat.
http://instagr.am/p/BZZtyLNFhqf
OBear073akaSMFan
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Is the Middle person Tony Gonzalez?
PalyBear
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OBear073akaSMFan said:

Is the Middle person Tony Gonzalez?
Yes.
UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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UrsusArctosCalifornicus said:

2017 FINA World Junior Swimming Championships

M 200m Breast - Reece gets the SILVER! Just 0.05 behind USA teammate Daniel Roy, ranked #14 by SwimSwam for the HS class of 2018 and who has yet to commit.

"It's obviously a friendship outside the pool. Nobody's really friends with anyone on the pool deck. He put it the right way, probably competitors. And it'll only intensify as we get older. There's no beef at all. I'm proud of him for getting up there and really making a lot of progression over the last few years." Whitley, on his relationship and rivalry with Roy

Well Reece "reunited" with Daniel + several other (unidentified) 2018 recruits this afternoon:



UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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UrsusArctosCalifornicus said:


Well Reece "reunited" with Daniel + several other (unidentified) 2018 recruits this afternoon:



Andrew Abruzzo & Daniel Roy visiting the farm this weekend...


Matt Anderson, Andrew Abruzzo (#8 CS), Daniel Roy (#14 SS), Jack LeVant (#1 CS, 2018 Furd commit), Mason Gonzalez (#28 CS, 2018 Furd commit), Grant Shoults
UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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UrsusArctosCalifornicus said:

Legit commit??

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Here's another 2018 commit announcement for Durden:


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CIF Finalist Galen Penvenne Gives Verbal Commitment to Cal Golden Bears



http://www.swimmingworldmagazine.com/news/cif-finalist-galen-penvenne-gives-verbal-commitment-to-cal-golden-bears/

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bearz012
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UrsusArctosCalifornicus said:

UrsusArctosCalifornicus said:

Andrew Abruzzo & Daniel Roy visiting the farm this weekend...


Matt Anderson, Andrew Abruzzo (#8 CS), Daniel Roy (#14 SS), Jack LeVant (#1 CS, 2018 Furd commit), Mason Gonzalez (#28 CS, 2018 Furd commit), Grant Shoults
3X JUNIOR WORLDS CHAMP ANDREW ABRUZZO VERBALLY COMMITS TO GEORGIA
https://swimswam.com/3x-junior-worlds-champ-andrew-abruzzo-verbally-commits-georgia/

World Juniors Gold Medalist Andrew Abruzzo Verbally Commits to Georgia Bulldogs
http://www.swimmingworldmagazine.com/news/world-juniors-gold-medalist-andrew-abruzzo-verbally-commits-to-georgia-bulldogs/

http://instagr.am/p/BaIJ_rSF1nt

Abruzzo (SS HM, CS National #8, PA #1) had a great long course season with LC times that don't exactly match up with his SCY times, so it'll be interesting to see how he'll do. Congratulations to him.
bearz012
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UrsusArctosCalifornicus said:

7. Robert Finke Saint Petersburg Aquatics Countryside High School Clearwater, FL
Best Times: 1650 free 14:37.71, 1000 free 8:49.71, 500 free 4:20.86, 400 IM 3:47.65, 200 back 1:47.27, 200 fly 1:48.65

https://swimswam.com/top-20-ncaa-swimming-recruits-boys-high-school-class-2018/
http://instagr.am/p/BaMv3Ulg6iS

bearz012
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Quote:

No doubt re Freeman versus Brinegar. Same applies to Simon Lamar, but I have a gut feeling that he is Stanford bound. Perhaps this is a odd coincidence, but there was a professor in Stanford's Dept of Aeronautics named Simon Lamar.
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JUNIOR WORLDS BRONZE MEDALIST SIMON LAMAR VERBALLY COMMITS TO HARVARD



https://swimswam.com/junior-worlds-bronze-medalist-simon-lamar-verbally-commits-harvard/

Simon: "Proud to announce my verbal commitment to Harvard! Thank you to all those who have been a part of the journey. Can't wait to contribute to HMSD! #veritas"
UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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bearz012 said:

JUNIOR WORLDS BRONZE MEDALIST SIMON LAMAR VERBALLY COMMITS TO HARVARD
Thanks, bearz012

Interesting piece of trivia/unsubstantiated rumour below, courtesy of the notorious SwimSwam comments board lol

SWIMFAN27: "His collegeswimming page had said Stanford University a little while ago. Maybe he changed his mind to Stanford?"

PROF: "No, I think he initially committed to Stanford, then decommitted and committed to Harvard. As for why, I have no clue."
UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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REECE WHITLEY OPENS 2017-2018 SEASON WITH 52-SECOND 100 YARD BREAST




https://swimswam.com/reece-whitley-opens-2017-2018-season-52-second-100-yard-breast/


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REECE WHITLEY POSTS 1:46 200 IM TO CLOSE OUT FIRST MEET OF THE SEASON


https://swimswam.com/reece-whitley-posts-146-200-im-close-first-meet-season/


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UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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Er, doesn't appear too legit after reading Steven's commitment statement lol (which actually references UF instead of Cal :p)...but anyway, just reporting CollegeSwimming's post!

Steven Azzano (ranked #1000+) from Niceville, FL.


https://www.collegeswimming.com/swimmer/438587/
HBear
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Daniel Roy to the Farm ---

https://swimswam.com/14-daniel-roy-announces-verbal-commitment-stanford/
BRBear
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Does anyone know if there'll be a press release announcing the signings this year? I know there wasn't one last year but there were in previous years. The coverage for this team has always been bordering on the minimum.
It would be nice to see if there are any surprise signings or internationals. Pretty much all domestic prospects are off the board, and the class so far comprises pretty much just Whitley, Jhong, and a few guys who are extremely unlikely to contribute. Those two alone are not nearly enough going forward to compete with the huge classes Texas, Furd, and Florida have put together, so I'm hoping they get some reinforcements from somewhere.
Overall a very disappointing haul especially given the immense depth of this years high school seniors; there was really plenty of talent to go around, especially in the freestyles. I wonder if the attrition and lack of capitalization in Cal's recruiting classes the past 3 years has been a major factor.
Polodad
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BRBear said:

Does anyone know if there'll be a press release announcing the signings this year? I know there wasn't one last year but there were in previous years. The coverage for this team has always been bordering on the minimum.
It would be nice to see if there are any surprise signings or internationals. Pretty much all domestic prospects are off the board, and the class so far comprises pretty much just Whitley, Jhong, and a few guys who are extremely unlikely to contribute. Those two alone are not nearly enough going forward to compete with the huge classes Texas, Furd, and Florida have put together, so I'm hoping they get some reinforcements from somewhere.
Overall a very disappointing haul especially given the immense depth of this years high school seniors; there was really plenty of talent to go around, especially in the freestyles. I wonder if the attrition and lack of capitalization in Cal's recruiting classes the past 3 years has been a major factor.
I have no idea why Durden doesn't put out an announcement. Most sports with an early signing period do announce, and then follow with an announcement with any late signees in April. Maybe no one signed the NLI in the early period.

But your last sentence seems a bit strong. Durden's teams have finished in NCAA top 2 for the past 8 years, with 3 wins. Texas has won 3 straight titles and is the other team with 8 consecutive top 2 finishes. Durden's recruiting class that just entered Cal is considered the best all time college recruiting class. Swim Swam just released their power rankings for November and elevated Cal to #1 over Texas. Durden is doing a lot right.
UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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Polodad said:

Maybe no one signed the NLI in the early period.
http://instagr.am/p/BbQGrBFlj26
http://instagr.am/p/BbQKtw3DRFw

Polodad said:

Durden is doing a lot right.
+1 ... Go Bears!
Polodad
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Who needs a formal announcement when we have UrsusArctosCalifornicus on the board.

What more do we know about O'Connell? He looks long and lean, yet still put up fast 100 fly and free times last spring.
UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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Thank you for your most kind words sir

But I must in all honesty apologise for the tardiness of posting these NLI signing photos of the men's recruits. Er, only excuse being that my area of familiarity tends to be biased more towards the women's side of the swimming...
solobear
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It would be great if Kliment Kolesnikov joins Cal.

http://instagr.am/p/BXlyxg2hlmG
UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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FIRST LOOKS: RANKING THE INCOMING NCAA MEN'S CLASSES OF 2022


#7 CAL

#1 Reece Whitley, Christopher Jhong, Daniel O'Connell

This is a very small class, but they crack the top 10 because of one name: #1 in the class, Reece Whitley. The best high school breaststroker to enter the NCAA system since Andrew Seliskar (who happens to go to Cal, too), Whitley gives Cal an immediate elite breaststroke option who is already fast enough to A final in both breaststrokes at NCAAs and who can solidify their medley relays as soon as he gets to campus.

For how fast he is at breaststroke, Whitley isn't someone so specialized in his stroke that he can't do anything else. He's also 1:47.1 BK, 1:48.8 FL, 1:43.9/3:47.1 IM, and 45.1/1:38.1 FR, with his IM being the most impressive. Whitley also had a fantastic summer, giving way to long course bests of 27.7/1:00.0/2:10.8 in breaststroke, earning silvers in the 100 and 200 at the 2017 World Jr Champs. With the momentum Cal has, the addition of Whitley could turn the corner for them as they seek another national title.

Christopher Jhong is a great IM'er (1:47/3:50) with a 1:39.7 200 free, while Daniel O'Connell has been 20.7/45.2 FR.

The class is tiny, but noting how large and powerful the current Cal freshman class is, the Golden Bears didn't necessarily need another army of newcomers for next fall. Still, the lack of numbers here and sparse sprint free promise keeps the class from breaking into the top 5.


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solobear said:

It would be great if Kliment Kolesnikov joins Cal.


MULTITUDE OF WJRS, RUSSIAN RECORDS FALL AT RUSSIAN SC NATIONALS


A number of records, including 4 WJRs from Kliment Kolesnikov, fell at the 2017 Russian SC Championships. Archive photo via Mike Lewis/Ola Vista Photography


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BearDevil
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Durden still has more than a few scholly $s left just based on graduations. Haven't looked at 2019 recruits yet, but kinda doubt he's saving it all for them. Likely has one or two major internationals still on the radar for the late signing period.
Polodad
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Don't know that we can be sure of that. #1 recruit may have gotten a full ride this year. Maybe he had to skimp on last year's class and made some promises to enhance it next year. Unless Durden is family, it is hard to know his $ plan.
BRBear
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Bit of a delayed response to the earlier exchange but I'll go ahead and say this anyway.
Durden is obviously doing a lot right, and the wouldn't be the dominant program they are if they weren't operating at a near optimal level of coaching and recruiting. Through 2014 or so they did probably the best job of any school in optimizing the talent they got, with multiple high-impact, A finalist type swimmers per class (the Adrian-Dugonjic class, Koon-Liivamagi class, Shields-Hoyt class, Stubblefield-Messerschmidt class (had some struggles but still many many points scored between them), and Prenot-Pebley class. The classes since then (starting with the just graduated Ryan Murphy and Long Gutierrez led class) have all had basically one major A final type swimmer and one or two swimmers getting consoles points, despite being somewhat higher rated recruiting classes overall. Now this is obviously still an amazing and enviable success rate compared to almost any other school, but in the past few years Texas has been operating at that multiple huge scorer per class level, while getting pretty much comparably rated classes. It's not a huge difference, but it's come out to a pretty big difference in NCAA scoring, and that's something they can point to in recruiting. While the top of the Cal roster can certainly go ahead to head with anyone, the depth has I think fallen off slightly. I'm not sure if all of this is due to a change in coaching, new swimmers not fitting as well into Durden's system, or just plain bad luck.

Superior talent and still excellent coaching has kept us ahead of schools like Florida, Georgia, and NC State. However, Florida and Georgia are getting better access to a big chunk of middle distance to distance and IM recruits simply because they've had much more sustained success in those areas than most other schools Cal especially. Not to say we never have success there, but in Durden's tenure I believe we've had one 200 free finalist and one 1650 finalist, and zero 500 finalists (may be discounting his first year when Dominik Meichtry was still around).
BRBear
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Polodad said:

Don't know that we can be sure of that. #1 recruit may have gotten a full ride this year. Maybe he had to skimp on last year's class and made some promises to enhance it next year. Unless Durden is family, it is hard to know his $ plan.

I'd be very surprised if they were out of scholarship money this year, as they were pursuing Roy, Ruslan Gaziev, I believe Ivanov before they committed and have not signed any money-worthy swimmers since then. Hoping for a major international to come in and complete the class; there are still a few decent ones listed on collegeswimming. Sort of doubt it'll be Kolesnikov since he swims at Energy Standard, which probably means he's already professional and is training with a small high level pro group. Though he is listed on collegeswimming; not sure if that's his doing? Either way I'd be wary of taking on Russian swimmers due to their state sponsored doping regime.
UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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UrsusArctosCalifornicus said:

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CAL OBTAINS VERBAL COMMITMENT FROM LOCAL FREE/FLYER DANIEL O'CONNELL



https://swimswam.com/cal-obtains-verbal-commitment-local-freeflyer-daniel-oconnell/

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UrsusArctosCalifornicus said:

Legit commit??

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CIF Finalist Galen Penvenne Gives Verbal Commitment to Cal Golden Bears



http://www.swimmingworldmagazine.com/news/cif-finalist-galen-penvenne-gives-verbal-commitment-to-cal-golden-bears/

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2018 Baby Bears take Iowa!

http://instagr.am/p/BcfUq6YBuPs
Kyle Millis, Daniel O'Connell, Elise Garcia, Galen Penvenne
bearz012
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http://instagr.am/p/BdgY_XqFA5Y

Happy Birthday, Reece!

swan
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Durden in the past gave a run down on all new recruits but hasn't done so the past couple of classes. It would be interesting to get his take on both the monster 2017 class (Hoffer, Carr, Grieshop and Mefford all in good/fair shape to score at NCAAs this coming March), as well as the somewhat light 2018 group.
My take is that the 2017 class used a great deal of Durden's scholly funds and the folks at Texas, Stanford, Florida, ASU etc had more dough to offer the best of the 2018 class, which as mentioned above, doesn't have many western bluechips. Durden is likely looking ahead to 2019 and 2020 where California and other western states have highly ranked prospects.

Our "critical" event need for 2018 is breaststroke given Hoppe's graduation and Reece Whitley is a stellar recruit. Getting a high-end flyer to off-set the departures of Justin Lynch and Matt Josa would have been nice, but Zheng Quah and possibly Ryan Hoffer can handle relay and individual event demands.
UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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Update (SwimSwam):

REECE WHITLEY WINS 200 FREE, 100 FLY AT LAST INTER-AC LEAGUE CHAMPS

UrsusArctosCalifornicus
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REECE WHITLEY BREAKS NATIONAL INDEPENDENT HS RECORD IN 200 IM



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REECE WHITLEY TAKES BACK NATIONAL HIGH SCHOOL RECORD IN 100 BREAST



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bearz012
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20 Question Tuesday: Reece Whitley Part 1

What a weekend for Reece Whitley. The World Junior Championship medalist and future Cal swimmer went to Easterns for the last time as a Penn Charter swimmer and was locked in a battle for the national 100 breaststroke record. Whitley came away with it, and while he was proud to end his career on a high note -- the Penn Charter women won the title -- he says he has a lot of work to do. He talks about that, and why swimming can be proud during Black History Month because of its diversity, in this first of a two-part 20 Question Tuesday.

12. You are going to Cal with Dave Durden. Do you see yourself working on your IM there?
Reece: Oh yes, of course. For Crystal, the basis of our program is IM training. So ever since I was a pretty young kid I've always trained IM. Now that my body is (laughs) finally filling out a little bit, I am getting a better feel on how to swim these other strokes. Everything is kind of falling into place and I am beginning to put together a good IM.

13. Dave's a great communicator, so you two go in on the same page, right?
Reece: Yes, in fact when I committed (to Cal), Dave told me I would not just swim the breaststroke, that there will be a lot more than that. And that is something that sold me on the program, knowing he doesn't want to limit what I can do in the other strokes, especially since i hope to bring my IM down.

14. Nice to have the recruiting process over?
Reece: Yes, but for me, it really was a great experience. The coaches I talked to are just phenomenal people, Eddie Reese (at Texas) and Gregg Troy and Steve (Jungbluth) at Florida -- they were all so great throughout the process.

15. All great schools and great locations -- good choices, one and all. But seeing how comfortable you are with Cal, it's nice to have that done and feel good about it, isn't it?
Reece: I really do feel like I'll fit in with the team at Cal, it was very comfortable with the guys there -- though it was certainly great atmospheres and teams at the other schools. Cal just seemed like a perfect fit. They train as hard as anyone and I felt really comfortable with Dave. I also know how hard they work at the other schools and the great results and people they have speaks for the commitment and results, just great programs.

16. It's funny because the Cal guys explained everything to me from which math courses my kid should take to get ready in college to how to fix my cell phone and the engineering behind it that caused the problem -- a pretty unique bunch, aren't they?
Reece: It is incredible to see what so many of the guys on the team are studying and the difference they hope to make in life with their careers. All of them are the really smart kind of thinkers that you just described. I felt like I look at the world a lot like they do. I don't think Dave would have someone on the team who didn't have that kind of mindset -- who doesn't understand how important it is to put school before swimming. I take my goals very seriously and I got the feeling those guys have that attitude. Again though, there were guys like that at the other schools and I was humbled to meet all those incredible people, too.

17. And if you want to work on your IM's backstroke, you can just work with the best in the world in Ryan Murphy, right?
Reece: For sure, Murph's going to whoop me in the IM workouts, and it'll take (laughs) a while to do a sprint backstroke set with him. But I'm really excited to be a sponge. There are a lot of resources at Cal. Being here with Crystal has been great, but it's only kind of been her and I, and we learn from people far away. So being in a place with more information and resources will be a great opportunity for which I am grateful.

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Also recruited by Florida & Texas, huh, but he came here so
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