The Week That Was: Kieran Smith, Talia Bates Win Two Each in Florida Sweep of Auburn


The Week That Was sponsored by Suitmate.

The Week That Was featured a Florida-Auburn meet, Ariarne Titmus and other Australians skipping World Championships, the NCAA ruling on their transgender policy, a pair of Hokie pool records, and a NAG tied that was set in 1978.

The Week That Was #1: Kieran Smith, Talia Bates Win Two Each in Florida Sweep of Auburn


Photo Courtesy: Luke Jamroz Photography

by David Rieder

Florida completed its dual meet slate with a pair of comfortable wins over the Auburn Tigers on Saturday. Florida’s men, led by U.S. Olympic medalists Kieran Smith and Bobby Finke, cruised to a 201-99 triumph, while Florida’s women won 184-116.

Against Auburn, Smith recorded a swift time of 1:32.96 to win the 200 free, the top time in any dual meet so far this season and the seventh-fastest mark all year. Smith also won the 500 free in 4:18.16, almost 12 seconds off his own American record. Meanwhile, Finke finished a surprising second-place in the 1000 free behind teammate Trey Freeman, 8:55.93 to 8:56.58. Finke flipped six tenths behind Freeman with 50 yards to go, and while he tried to accelerate and storm past Freeman, just as he did to the best swimmers in the world in two Olympic finals last year, but Freeman also shifted gears and finished with a 23.64 split to hold Finke at bay.

The Week That Was #2: Ariarne Titmus and Other Australians Skipping World Championships Would Hurt Swimming

Jul 26, 2021; Tokyo, Japan; Ariarne Titmus (AUS) celebrates after finishing ahead of Katie Ledecky (USA) to win the women's 400m freestyle final during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Summer Games at Tokyo Aquatics Centre. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports

Photo Courtesy: Robert Hanashiro/USA TODAY Sports

by David Rieder

In July, Ariarne Titmus came out on top of perhaps the most anticipated swimming races of the Tokyo Olympics when she out-dueled Katie Ledecky for gold in the women’s 400 freestyle, swimming the second-fastest time in history in the process. She doubled down on golds two days later when she topped the podium in the 200 free.

But when the world’s best gather again at this spring’s World Championships in Fukuoka, Japan, Titmus may not be in attendance. And plenty of other top Australian swimmers, including double backstroke gold medalist Kaylee McKeown and sprint stars Kyle Chalmers and Cate Campbell, may also skip Worlds. The purpose would be to focus on the Commonwealth Games, scheduled for two months later in Birmingham, England.

The Week That Was #3: NCAA Announces Changes to Transgender Athlete Policies Effective Immediately; Defers to USA Swimming

Lia Thomas - NCAA

Photo Courtesy:

by David Rieder

Following a Board of Governors meeting Wednesday, the NCAA has announced changes to its policies regarding transgender athletes participating in women’s sports, and those changes could impact the ability of Penn’s Lia Thomas to compete in this season’s NCAA Championships. While trans females were previously allowed to compete in women’s events after undergoing one year of hormone-suppression therapy, the new policy will bring U.S. collegiate sports in line with national and international governing bodies and with the international Olympic movement.

The Week That Was #4: Youssef Ramadan Sets 100 Fly Pool Record in Virginia Tech Romp over Penn State

Ramadan_Y_21SW_vti_DK_2678E (1)

Youssef Ramadan Photo Courtesy: Dave Knachel/Virginia Tech Athletics

by Matthew de George

Virginia Tech’s Youssef Ramadan swam a pair of school records and won three events as the Hokies swept Penn State in a pair of decisive wins.

The No. 13 ranked Va Tech men scored a 196.5-103.5 win, while the women coasted to a 213-83 victory.

The Week That Was #5: Claire Weinstein Ties 13-14 NAG Set by Sippy Woodhead in 1978


Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

by Dan D’Addona

Claire Weinstein, 14, tied the 13-14 USA National Age Group Record in the 200-meter freestyle (LCM) on Sunday.

The Sandpipers of Nevada swimmers finished the race in 1:58.53. It tied one of the oldest NAG records, set originally by Sippy Woodhead in 1978.