Georgia Invitational Stacked with Cal, Michigan, Virginia, Auburn

during the Bulldogs' swim meet against Florida at Gabrielsen Natatorium in Athens, Ga., on October 28, 2016. (Photo by Cory A. Cole)
Photo Courtesy: Cory A. Cole

By Dan D’Addona.

After a week of Thanksgiving break, many of the national powerhouses are back in big college invitationals this week.

One of the biggest annually is the Georgia Invitational. The meet has a history of seeing some of the fastest in-season times in history, which makes sense since the high level of competition brings out the best in everyone – at least hopefully.

The meet will run Friday-Sunday at Georgia and will include men’s and women’s competitions. In addition to the host Bulldogs, the meet will involve the Cal, Michigan and Virginia men’s and women’s teams in addition to the Auburn men.

There aren’t a ton of teams at the event, but they are all traditionally national contenders.

The Cal men are No. 2, while Michigan is No. 4, Auburn is No. 10, Georgia is No. 12 and Virginia is No. 23.

For the women, Michigan is No. 3, Georgia is No. 5, Cal is No. 6 and Virginia is No. 16. The Harvard and UCLA divers are also scheduled to compete at the event.

This will be a chance to gauge individual and team performances at about the halfway point of the season. Some teams will suit up, some will do a partial taper. It should make for some fast races.

This is also a time for teams to gauge their relays. Each relay at the Georgia Invitational will be like a final at the NCAA championships.

Who will be the one to make a move?

Georgia has Gunnar Bentz and the Litherland triplets leading the way. Cal has Kathleen Baker and Andrew Seliskar. Michigan has Felix Aubock and Siobhan Haughey. Virginia has Megan Moroney and the Auburn men are full of talent, especially on the relays. And that is just naming a couple. These teams are all stacked.

There are plenty of opportunities for the next group to make their move into the elite at this meet.

The women’s backstroke has traditionally been the powerhouse stroke of this meet, but Rachael Bootsma, Elizabeth Pelton, Missy Franklin, Courtney Bartholomew and Olivia Smoliga are all former college swimmers now.

Which stroke will take over as the new power?

The best part about this meet is it could be any of them.


  1. avatar

    I doubt Bentz swims.

  2. avatar

    Megan Maroney hasn’t swum yet this season for UVA. Doubtful she’ll be there, though I haven’t seen a psych sheet yet. UVA has a strong duo in Jen Marrkand and Caitlin Cooper though who should both hold their own at this meet.