Inside the Lee and Joe Jamail Texas Swimming Center, a white-brick building on the corner of Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard and Red River Street, waves of calm permeate the House that Eddie Built. A sea of crystal-blue water gently laps over the gutter of the pool and trickles back down. In its reflection two enormous steel fans silently rotate, like a pair of octopi performing a synchronized swimming routine on the ceiling. Every minute or so, the sound of flesh smacking the water breaks the silence, as divers practice on the far side of the pool.
At 3 p.m., the swimmers begin walking in, some of their faces familiar from atop 2016 Olympic podiums in Rio like Townley Haas and Joseph Schooling, the then-21-year-old who took down Michael Phelps in the 100-meter butterfly for the Singapore national team.
Once the pool is filled with more gold medalists than most countries, a 76-year-old man, the John Wooden of the pool deck, enters. He’s wearing a black T-shirt, khaki shorts, and black and white tennis shoes with white athletic socks poking up over the tops, an unassuming ensemble for the most decorated swimming and diving coach in modern history and the most successful coach to ever wear the Longhorn logo. He looks like your grandfather — and he literally is if you’re Luke Bowman, one of the 31 swimmers in the pool — if your grandfather was capable of winning NCAA titles in four consecutive decades, including the last three straight.
Badger Swim Club is very proud of the accomplishments of Alumni Jeff and Will Powers. Both father and son are Badger alum and have been an integral part of the Badger community for many years. The work Jeff is doing with Float Hope is inspirational and we wish him luck.
Founder’s son William Powers swam his way to Georgetown
Float Hope’s founder Jeffrey Powers 5th child William Powers started his freshman year at Georgetown University having been recruited for swimming but being accepted early based on academic merit… while not financially disadvantaged William chose to swim at age 10 after waking up from a coma a year earlier. William’s swimming miracle became a catalyst for the charity’s founding says Jeffrey Powers.
“With my 5th child I got a swimmer by default after Will was struck by car driven by a drunken driver and in a coma for nearly a week at age 9 …not only shearing his right femur & left tibia and suffered a traumatic brain injury to the frontal lobe of his skull. Thanks to doctors at Children’s Specialized Hospital in NJ where he spent many months William eventually returned home and began the race against time that all TBI patients face to recover quickly with the hopes of healing before the clock stops… Will was determined to beat it and swimming helped.
William started swimming with kids half his age at Badger Swim Club but swam with passion despite his limited endurance (impairment from the TBI). William’s positive outlook on life was jump-started with his newfound sport, a process of learning, liking and then loving competitive swimming. Swimming on a team embedded character, discipline and new goals that helped him recover. After “almost losing William”… we learned how close a family must be and how important it is that we support each other. For the first time I witnessed the enormous benefits swimming and how it allowed my child to grow physically and succeed mentally against almost insurmountable odds.
William’s continued progress in high school revealed to us what swimming might do for the thousands of Indian River youth “without means” who have no chance to swim on a team only if they could be gifted swimming as a “life-skill.” Since Indian River County was #1 in income disparity we felt it could only work if we engaged young children and gifted the sport to children without means. Along with Coach Barlow and McClain we started Float Hope not only to advantage kids to swim like my son… but to enter and succeed in high school with confidence, discipline and self-esteem. My hope is for these kids to “win in life” by attending a 4-year college of their choice and bring leadership and passion back home to our community and the neighborhoods that are desperate for more role models.
Float Hope’s mission is to instill the confidence in kids so when they enter high school they burst their school doors open with confidence. Float Hope’s children are passionate and beginning to develop a positive view of themselves because by age 13 kids begin to understand clearly how others perceive them…so it must be embedded in their DNA year round while they are ages 6-11. To do that requires a year round commitment to a sport that is life changing. Swimming can do that. Swimming competitively is a life skill unlike any other”…says Jeffrey Powers the founder of Float Hope.
Attention Swimmers: Applications are due by August 15, 2017
SCHOLASTIC ALL AMERICA PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS
Application Process open June 1- August 15, 2017
2016-2017 ACADEMIC QUALIFICATIONS
Grade completion requirement – applicant must have completed 10th, 11th, or 12th grade GPA Requirement – minimum 3.5 GPA for the current academic year.
A=4, B=3, C=2. If numerical grades are used, the following scale will be used unless the school’s letter grade conversion is given on the transcript: A=90-100; B=80-89; C=70-79.
Honors, Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate, and dual credit college level academic courses will earn one half (.5) extra Grade Point. Grades for academic subjects only are calculated – history/social studies, English, mathematics, sciences, foreign languages, arts (visual and performing), computer sciences. A grade lower than a C in an academic subject will mean automatic rejection of the applicant. Grades for non-academic courses will NOT be calculated – band, choir, health, driver education, physical education, and any other class marked non-academic on a transcript.
There will be no special status designation for a 4.0 GPA other than for a national champion who also has a 4.0 GPA.
Applicants must have swum an individual pool time equal to a 2016 Winter Junior qualifying time in any individual event during the SAA qualifying period (August 16, 2016 – August 15, 2017) with qualifying times in SWIMS – list of times are posted on the USA Swimming website. A qualifying time will be available for selection from the SWIMS database during the application process. Only ONE time is necessary and only ONE application is necessary.
Disability or Open Water Requirements (for athletes without pool requirements
2017 Deaflympics– July 18-30, 2017, Samsun, Turkey
2016 Can-Am Open – November 25-27, 2016, Miami, FL
2017 Speedo Can-Am Para Championships – Mar 31-Apr 2, 2017, Windsor, ON
2017 Open Water National Championships – May 19-21, 2017, Castaic Lake, CA
On a cloudy, slightly rainy, day last year Gillette World Sport Visited the Badger Swim Club to film the Perfect Backstroke Technique. Gillette sat down with Coach John Collins and Eric Culver to discuss Backstroke. Take a watch.
The Badger Team performed very well at The U.S. Nationals last week, with the Badger Men coming in 9th overall. Zane Grothe scored 53 points! The U.S. Nationals is scored even though its a selection meet with no relays.
Swim Swam posted a recent article that outlines all of the top scores at the event, check it out here
Cody Miller also earned a spot on the World Championship team with second place and a time of 59.11.
Congratulations to Coach Dominick Galimi who was recently inducted into the Catholic High School Athletic Association (CHSAA) Hall of Fame!
Celebrating his 20th season as the leader of the Fordham Prep Aqua Rams where he has led his swimmers to six New York State overall titles, eight New York State Catholic School championships, and eight CHSAA championships in the past 10 years. The team has been nationally ranked nine times in the Top 10 NISCA ratings during his tenure as head coach, going as high as fifth on the prestigious ranking system. Individually, five Fordham Prep athletes attended the 2016 Olympic Trials; four alumni and one current team member. Over 20 swimmers have achieved All-American status while swimming for Coach Galimi at Fordham Prep.
Coach Galimi is a long time Badger Coach and an integral part of our organization. Those who are lucky enough to work with him, know he brings professionalism, knowledge, and composure to the pool deck, and is an outstanding role model for all swimmers, coaching them to be the best they can be, in and out of the pool.
Chuck Wielgus, the Chief Executive Officer for USA Swimming has passed away. Swimming World was informed by USA Swimming early today – April 23, 2017. Wielgus announced his retirement earlier this year. He has also served as CEO of the USA Swimming Foundation since 2004. Mike Unger is now the interim CEO as a national search continues to find the next Chief Executive Officer.
Statement From USA Swimmming:
Chuck Wielgus, who served USA Swimming as Executive Director for nearly 20 years, passed away on Sunday in Colorado Springs. Wielgus died of complications from colon cancer, which was first diagnosed in 2006 and Wielgus battled while continuing to steer USA Swimming to record growth. He was 67.
Joining USA Swimming as Executive Director in July 1997, Wielgus was the longest-tenured chief executive in the Olympic family. Wielgus added duties as Chief Executive Officer of the USA Swimming Foundation at its inception in 2004.
“This is an extremely sad day, as we lost Chuck Wielgus, one of the finest men I have ever had the pleasure to work alongside. He will be missed by all of us in USA Swimming and all his friends and colleagues around the world. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his wife, Nancy, and his entire family in this difficult time,” said USA Swimming Board of Directors Chair Jim Sheehan. “Chuck was one of the finest CEOs in all of sport and his leadership of USA Swimming has made it the premier National Governing Body in the Olympic movement. Chuck’s selflessness, compassion and intelligence have been hallmarks of his work with the staff, Board of Directors, athletes, coaches and volunteers of USA Swimming.”READ MORE
In a rare late SCY season appearance, Badger Swim club took a small group to Speedo Sectional Championships at Ithaca last weekend with a single goal: swim fast and make cuts. This meet was for the swimmers, and John decided to forgo entering relays to allow the kids to focus on the task at hand. The results were outstanding. Badger swimmers won 8 Individual golds, one silver and four bronze medals. Leading the charge, were Andrew Babyak, Carly Cummings, and Quinn Scannell. Over the course of the weekend, 19 national level cuts were made: 7 Winter Juniors, 4 Summer Juniors, 3 Winter Nationals, 3 Summer Nationals, and 2 US Open. Due to caliber of the swims, we are considering bringing the whole team next year. Due to the caliber of individual swims, this small sectional group placed 8th in the meet (without relays).
We had impressive performances and many personal bests from Andrew Babyak, Maria Burtseva, Jared Copeland, Carly Cummings, Christian Farricker, Kim Jogis, Alexa Lantin, Haofeng Liu, Jack Loveless, Liam Loveless, Jalen Ramjohn, Mary Rotenberg, Paula Scanlan, Quinn Scannell, Asher Stukelman, and Garrett Towne. Complete results can be found at this link.
Some swims of note include:
Andrew won the 1000 with a time of 9:13.09 and qualified for Summer Juniors at NCAC. He followed up with a win in the 500 and 1650. His time of 15:26.79 earned a Winter National berth.
Quinn won the 200FR and 200BK. Her time of 54.67 earned 2nd place in the 100BK and a Summer Junior cut. And, after three other junior cuts spread throughout the weekend, Quinn ended the meet with a 1:57.00 in her win of the 200BK. It was her first US Open cut of the meet. Quinn also won the female High Point award for the meet.
After qualifying for Open Water Juniors, Christian headed to Ithaca with a goal of making Juniors in a pool swim. He earned his first Junior cut in the 400IM with a time of 3:57.25. He later missed the 200FLY Junior cut by .01 with a time of 1:51.60.
Not to be outdone, Carly had a great meet. She won three events: 400IM, 200BR, and 200IM, and her times of 4:12.63 (400IM), 2:12.18 (200BR), and 1:58.77 (200IM) were all Summer National cuts and put her in the mix for an amazing summer.