March 25, 2013
by Layne Herdt (Seminoles.com)-
The 200 free relay is one of most entertaining events in swimming. It takes less than one minute and twenty second for four swimmers to each swim a 50 with the distance between first and second sometimes a hundredth of a second. in 2013 the Seminoles have one of the best 200 free relays in the country and hope to prove it this week at the NCAA Championships.
"We know we've been training all year for the opportunity to swim really fast at NCAA,'s," senior David Sanders said. "We're all excited that [training] is in the last two weeks." Paul Murray, Trice Bailey, David Sanders and Mark Weber have been together for two consecutive seasons which is one of the main reasons they have been so successful.
"We don't have to worry about [takeoffs] quite so much because we've done it off the same guy for two years now," senior Mark Weber said. "We know how they're going to finish, we know the timing coming in and it's almost second nature just to be able to go off of that person and have a really great takeover."
Despite the fast paced race, their is still a lot of strategy involved in how you stack the relay.
"My job is to get us a lead or as close to a lead a possible," junior Paul Murray said. "It's have the fastest reaction time and get my hand to the wall first."
"Whatever lead [Paul] gets because he's usually right there at the top just kind of hand on," senior Trice Bailey said. "Bring it in for David to hop into clean water and finish it off."
"Usually the third leg is where the weakest swimmer is," Sanders said. "But to compete for a national championship you can't have a weak leg. I know as long as I'm swimming fast enough to give Weber in first then it's game over."
"Coach Andy Robins likes to say go primal and I think that's pretty much what my job is on the relay," Weber said. "Whether we're fifth or first it's up to me to swim as fast as I can and out split everybody else in the pool and just bring it home."
Now the goal is becoming a the first swimmers to earn National Championship honors since Brendon Dedekind in 1999. But to put their names on that distinguished list they know it will take a tremendous effort.
"Fast," Bailey said.
"A perfect race," Murray said.
"It's going to have to be under 1:16 I think," Weber said. "I think Auburn, Michigan and us are all capable of being that fast. I think the team that hits the perfect race on that day is going to be the one who wins."
Despite great competition these four swimmers know when they are at their best, the can compete with the anyone.
"To have these guys that you practice with all the time and you have fun and joke around with and then to get up and race with them you know that everybody's going to do their part and you're going to win," Weber said.
The training is done and race day is almost here so the quartet of swimmers will know soon if enough if they have what it takes to etch themselves in the history books at champions.