The Week That Was: Missy Franklin NCAA Flashback

Mar 21, 2015; Greensboro, NC, USA; Missy Franklin after winning the 200 backstroke finals during NCAA Division I Swimming and Diving-Championships at Greensboro Aquatic Center. Mandatory Credit: Evan Pike-USA TODAY Sports

The Week That Was sponsored by Suitmate.

The Week That Was for the first full week of 2022 featured a Missy Franklin flashback, finalists for U.S. Sports Academy athlete of the year, Jacob Pebley’s call for mental health action, Lia Thomas’ last regular season swim meet, and Julia Podkoscielny’s verbal college commitment.

The Week That Was #1: NCAA Swimming Flashback: Missy Franklin Swims Sub-1:40 in 200 Freestyle for Signature Moment of College Career

Mar 21, 2015; Greensboro, NC, USA; Missy Franklin after winning the 200 backstroke finals during NCAA Division I Swimming and Diving-Championships at Greensboro Aquatic Center. Mandatory Credit: Evan Pike-USA TODAY Sports

Photo Courtesy: Evan Pike/USA TODAY Sports

by David Rieder

Less than three years earlier, Missy Franklin had captured her first individual Olympic gold medal, coming from behind to beat Australia’s Emily Seebohm in the women’s 100-meter backstroke. A few days later, she won gold again in a dominant 200 back performance, breaking the world record in the process, and Franklin also helped the United States to a pair of relay triumphs. After each gold medal, Franklin flashed her trademark smile in a show of genuine joy, but her celebrations were otherwise reserved.

But on this spring evening in Greensboro, N.C., Franklin pumped her fist and slammed the water. This swim, in which she won her third of an eventual four individual NCAA titles, meant something extra special.

The Week That Was #2: Katie Ledecky, Caeleb Dressel Finalists for U.S. Sports Academy Athlete of the Year

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Katie Ledecky; Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

by Matthew de George

Caeleb Dressel and Katie Ledecky are among the finalists for the U.S. Sports Academy’s 2021 Athlete of the Year ballot, announced Monday.

Voting is being conducted online and will run through Jan. 14. The swimmers are among 12 male and 12 female finalists, hailing from a total of 12 countries.

The Week That Was #3: Jacob Pebley Urges Consideration of Mental Health in Transgender Swimming Debate

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Photo Courtesy: Becca Wyant

by Matthew de George

Olympic swimmer Jacob Pebley weighed in on the debate over transgender swimmers sparked by Penn’s Lia Thomas, advocating for a consideration of mental health for swimmers involved.

Pebley posted his comments to Instagram.

The Week That Was #4: Under Scrutiny in Routine Final Home Meet, Penn’s Lia Thomas Wins Twice

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Lia Thomas, far left, and fellow Penn seniors await senior day recognition Saturday in a tri-meet with Dartmouth and Yale

by Matthew de George

If you kept your gaze low enough to ignore the four tables of media members atop the stands at Penn’s Sheerr Pool, and if you drowned out the clicking of camera shutters every time Lia Thomas neared the starting block, you would’ve gotten a thoroughly average, mundane swim meet Saturday afternoon.

The structure of women’s swimming was not fractured by Thomas or anyone else in an Ivy League tri-meet between Penn, Dartmouth and Yale. Instead, a swimmer who has made headlines recently swam a league meet. Deep into her winter training, she swam times well off her December bests. She won a couple of races, lost a couple and was celebrated for her accomplishments as a senior in the final home meet of the season.

The Week That Was #5: Five-Time Florida State Champ Julia Podkoscielny Verbals to Gators for 2023

Julia Podkoscielny florida

Photo Courtesy: Julia Podkoscielny

by Chandler Brandes

 The University of Florida has continued to build a powerhouse recruiting class for the fall of 2023, recently landing a verbal commitment from in-state standout and Olympic Trials qualifier Julia Podkoscielny of Fort Lauderdale.

Podkoscielny does her club swimming with Pine Crest Swim Team and was the 400m IM runner-up at the Toyota U.S. Open where she also took third in the 200m back. This past summer, she raced three events at Wave II of Olympic Trials.