Changes will allow for more schools to be represented, increase level of competition in individual events
Sept. 18, 2012
INDIANAPOLIS - Last week, the NCAA® Division I Championships/Sports Management Cabinet approved a new selection process for the men's and women's swimming & diving championships that will be put into place for the upcoming 2013 DI Men's and Women's Swimming & Diving Championships.
"I hope that this is going to put us into a situation where we have more chances to get athletes to the meet." head coach Dave Collins said. "It is something we fell short of the last couple of years, so it's exciting for Missouri State because it opens up more opportunities. I think it's exciting for all mid-major level schools to get their name out there amongst some of the bigger BCS conferences."
In a news release, the NCAA said that the new selection process for swimmers would put more of a focus on individual events, while still maintaining the access ratio to the championships. Instead of selecting 281 women and 235 men, counting participants in both individual and relay events, the new process will select swimmers based solely on individual events.
According to the new rules, a team must have at least one swimmer invited to the Championships in an individual event to be eligible to swim one or more relay events, provided they have met the "A" qualifying standard during the season. In years past, a team could qualify for the Championship meet with a relay alone.
The Division I Men's and Women's Swimming & Diving Committee believes the new selection process creates more competitive fields in each of the individual events while still allowing the top relay teams to enter those events. In addition, more schools will be represented at the championships.
"It's nice that the NCAA is really listening to its coaches and this is something that a lot of coaches have been working very hard on for many years," Collins added. "We identified it as an issue with our sport. We need a true championship meet with as much representation as we can, while keeping intact that it is a high-level, elite championship meet. I think the NCAA has done this and it is going to be exciting to see how it works out."