PHOENIX, Arizona, March 12. MICHAEL Phelps and Missy Franklin were unable to win World Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year at yesterday's Laureus Awards, but Phelps didn't go home completely empty-handed. The most decorated Olympian of all time was given a special "Exceptional Achievement Award" for his career in the pool, while track star Usain Bolt was given the Sportsman of the Year award for the third time. Jessica Ennis, the Olympic gold medalist in the heptathlon, won Sportswoman of the Year. Tennis player Andy Murray was selected as Breakthrough Athlete of the Year over swimmers Ye Shiwen and Yannick Agnel. Swimming did get some recognition, as Daniel Dias was named Disability Athlete of the Year.
The early list of swimmers invited to the men's NCAA Division I championships has been released, and it looks like Berkeley and Michigan will be sending the most swimmers to the meet, with 17 each. Cal is looking to defend its team title, while Michigan could be looking at their first team victory since 1995. The official list will be available tomorrow, but you can see how we at Swimming World broke down the list by teams at swimmingworld.com.
The NCSA junior national championships begins this afternoon in Orlando, Florida, with the 1000 freestyle and the 200 medley relay. Rebecca Mann of Clearwater Aquatics will be the one to watch in the women's 1000, with a few swimmers looking to break nine minutes in the men's 1000.