Tennessee DQed in 4×100 Medley Relay for Lochte Rule

Photo Courtesy: Dan D'Addona

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The Tennessee Volunteers finished sixth in the women’s 4×100 medley relay at the women’s NCAA championships, but the team was disqualified for a stroke violation, reported as the freestyle swimmer “swimming in a style of backstroke” — also known as the Lochte rule.

The Lochte rule is invoked when a swimmer performs  underwater dolphin kicks closer to his or her back past vertical in medley swimming, as in IM or a medley relay. Stanzi Moseley, the Tennessee anchor, reportedly kicked on her back in a style that would be legal in an individual freestyle event or in a freestyle relay.

The Volunteers were in third place before the DQ, and even after the DQ, they remained fourth, just one-half point behind Texas (109 to 108.5).


  1. Brian Cameron

    This rule is moronic!!!

    • Janet Ellis-Cranmer

      It is a repetition of backstroke if still on back when first kick or stroke is taken. Just be glad they are calling dolphin kicking off start or turn in streamline for free isn’t repetition of fly.

    • Brian Cameron

      I understand the rule. It goes against everything we teach the athletes for freestyle push-offs. Come off on your back and transition to stomach using fast fly kicks. They might as well call a swimmer doing Fly kicks off the wall on the stomach, butterfly. At least it would be consistent.

    • avatar

      Only if you don’t understand the point of a medley.

    • Andrew Webber

      It’s a stupid rule. Why does it need to be there? The fifteen metre rule should cover it

      • avatar

        The point of swimming a medley is to demonstrate competence in four different strokes so the rules require that you do one quarter of the race in four different strokes, starting and finishing each stroke the way you start them in a race of that stroke (starting and finishing on the back for backstroke and finishing on the front for the other three stokes). The reason for all the trouble now is that Ryan Lochte decided to cheat to win the 200 IM at FINA Worlds by kicking on doing the underwater for his fourth leg on his back. FINA decided that wasn’t technically prohibited by the rules so they let it go and then changed the rules to explain why it was wrong. So, now we are DQing kids for making a mistake because Ryan Lochte decided to cheat.

  2. Daniel Gately

    Yes stupid as stupid is!

    • Janet Ellis-Cranmer

      Why? Leaving wall on back and taking a stroke or kick is backstroke. That’s repetition of a stroke.

    • Steve Lane

      It has been in the USA Rule Book for 3 years. It falls under swimming more that 1/4th of the race in backstroke. Good for the Official making the call.

    • Susan Marburger Shannon

      Janet Ellis-Cranmer I understand that but then why isn’t dolphin kick in free from the start and turn a repetition of fly?

  3. Janet Ellis-Cranmer

    Edwin Schuessler, Tammi Sturm, Kim Nix-Schussler

  4. Cory Zimmerman

    For violating the Lochte rule.

  5. Erica Lynn

    Erin Weaver

  6. Scott Perry

    Isnt it called FREE-style?

    • avatar

      No, the rules for a medley (individual or relay) have always specified that the last quarter of the race must be swum using a different stroke from the first three.

  7. Krisztina Napolitano

    Know the rules in an IM. There is a rule and she was in advatage by not following it. If she hates the rule she should work on overturning the rule instead just deciding not to follow it and cheat.