Pac-12 Men’s Awards: Leon Marchand, Dave Durden, Shangfei Wang Lead Honorees

Photo Courtesy: Pac-12 Conference

The Pac-12 Conference announced the recipients of the 2023 Pac-12 Men’s Swimming & Diving postseason awards, as voted on by the league’s coaches.

For the second year in a row, Sun Devils have collected both the Swimmer of the Year and Freshman of the Year awards. After receiving both awards during his freshman season last year, Leon Marchand is now a back-to-back Swimmer of the Year recipient alongside his teammate, Jonny Kulow, who was named the Freshman Swimmer of the Year. Wrapping up the swim awards is Cal head coach Dave Durden, who led the Golden Bears to a second consecutive National Championship title.

USC diving saw its first postseason recognition since 2020 with a sweep of the three awards. Sophomore Shangfei Wang was awarded Men’s Diver of the Year while Laurent Gosselin-Paradis was awarded Freshman Diver of the Year. The pair’s head coach, Hongping Li, earned his sixth Diving Coach of the Year award.

SWIMMER OF THE YEAR: Leon Marchand, So., ASU (Toulouse, France)
After helping Arizona State to its first ever Pac-12 title, Leon Marchand was named the 2023 Men’s Swimmer of the Year.

The powerhouse sophomore went 6-for-7 in the Pac-12 Championships, winning three individual titles (200 IM, 400 IM, 200 Breast), three relay titles (200 Medley, 400 Medley, 800 Free), and finished runner-up in one relay (400 free). Contributing the most points on his team, Marchand collected just under 100 points of the Sun Devils’ 897.5 overall and saw more wins than any other athlete. In his conference endeavors, Marchand set two NCAA records (400 IM, 200 Breast) and a Pac-12 Championship record (200 IM), while becoming back-to-back champion in three individual events and one relay event. Marchand not only walked away with the conference title, but with Swimmer of the Meet as well.

Marchand’s performance only improved at the 2023 NCAA Championships, where he pulled out a whopping three individual NCAA titles, leading the Sun Devils to a runner-up finish, their highest in program history. Alongside taking home a win in each individual event he competed in, Marchand set three new NCAA records and became back-to-back champion in two events. Breaking records all previously set by him, the Sun Devil took home his second titles in the 200 IM (1:36.34) and 200 Breast (1:46.91) and became a first-time champ in the 400 IM (3:28.82) to become the fastest swimmer in the country in the respective events.

Marchand went on to set NCAA split records in three of the four relay podium finishes the Sun Devils saw, setting a 50 breast record in the 200 medley relay, an anchor split in the 800 free relay, and a 100 breast record in the 400 medley relay.

93 points was the sophomore’s final NCAA tally, contributing to over 20 percent of the Sun Devils’ overall points.

FRESHMAN SWIMMER OF THE YEAR: Jonny Kulow, Fr., ASU (Lander, Wyo.)
After becoming a Pac-12 Champion in the 200 Medley Relay and earning multiple other Pac-12 and NCAA podium finishes, Jonny Kulow was named 2023 Men’s Freshman Swimmer of the Year.

In his first year as a Sun Devil, Kulow helped lead his team to its first ever Pac-12 Championship, thanks to a first-place finish in the 200 Medley Relay, a second-place finish in the 200 Free Relay, fourth in the 50 free, eighth in the 100 free and 11th in the 200 free. His conference run gave him more points than any other freshman and contributed largely to the team win.

Kulow continued his success at the NCAA Championships swimming as a part of four podium relay teams (200 Medley, 400 Medley, 400 Free, 800 Free), including second in the 200 Medley. Kulow and the Sun Devil squad set ASU program records in all four relays, with the freshman grabbing 37.5 points to add to ASU’s highest Championship finish in program history (2nd).

SWIMMING COACH OF THE YEAR: Dave Durden, California  
For the 12th time in his career, and sixth year in a row, California head coach Dave Durden was named the 2023 Men’s Swimming Coach of the Year. Leading the Golden Bears to their eighth National Championship, and second in a row, Durden spearheaded a team that saw five combined first-place finishes and 23 combined podium finishes during the postseason run.

Despite only competing with one single diver, Golden Bear swimming was able to earn enough points and podium spots for a runner-up finish in the Pac-12 Championship and a 52-point victory in the NCAAs.

Durden became the first coach since 1994 to win back-to-back National Championships and has now been at the helm for seven of Cal’s eight national titles.

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DIVER OF THE YEAR: Shangfei Wang, So., USC (Vancouver, Canada) 
USC Trojan sophomore Shangfei Wang was named the 2023 Men’s Diver of the Year after his impressive postseason performance.

At the Pac-12 Championships, Wang competed in the three meter diving final, taking home seventh and contributing 12 points to his team’s score. Heading straight into NCAA Zone E Diving Championships, the sophomore walked away with two runner-up finishes in the 1 Meter (751.40) and 3 Meter (730.15)

Wang’s NCAA performance highlighted Pac-12 Diving by being the only diver to compete in multiple event finals. He began his Championship run with a fifth-place finish in the 1 Meter (391.70) and the Conference’s highest diving finish at the event, taking home second in the 3 Meter (448.30). Overall, the sophomore tallied 99 points between the three postseason events.

FRESHMAN DIVER OF THE YEAR: Laurent Gosselin-Paradis, Fr., USC (Montreal, Quebec, Canada) 
After competing in his first season as a Trojan, Laurent Gosselin-Paradis was named the 2023 Freshman Diver of the Year.

Earning his first ever Pac-12 Championship title, the freshman picked up a 354.80 win in the 1 Meter, the Trojans’ first since 2011. Paradis then went on to earn himself a spot in the Trojan record book, with the fourth-best 3 Meter dive in program history, taking home second in the event. Rounding out his Pac-12 run, a 416.05 final score on the Platform dive gave Paradis his second conference title.

At the NCAA Zone E Diving Championships, the freshman competed in the 1 Meter, taking home fifth place and earning himself 25 points.

For the sixth time in his career, and first time since 2020, Hongping Li of USC has been named the 2023 Men’s Diving Coach of the Year. Leading the Trojans to 140 points in the Pac-12 Championships, Li’s divers contributed to just under 45 percent of the Trojans’ overall score, taking first place in all three events and earning an additional runner-up finish in the 1 Meter.

At the NCAAs, one of the five Pac-12 divers to compete in finals was Trojan Shangfei Wang, putting up the best conference performance of the championship. Li coached Wang to a single podium finish and a fifth-place finish as Wang was the league’s top point-getter at the Championships.

Li is the second most decorated Diving Coach of the Year in Pac-12 history.

— The above press release was posted by Swimming World in conjunction with the Pac-12. For press releases and advertising inquiries please contact

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