This weekend is an important one for the Ohio State men’s swimming team, as they travel to Ann Arbor to take on rival Michigan.
The Buckeyes will duel against the Big Ten’s top-ranked Wolverines in what is expected to be one of OSU’s toughest and most challenging conference meets on the road.
“It’s a good time to get some quality racing in, prior to Big Tens,” junior Brayden Seal said. “If you can get some good races in, it boosts your confidence going into championship season.”
With Michigan performing in its own backyard with an array of talented athletes, there will certainly be some challenges posed for the Buckeyes.
“I know that the guy I’m going to be racing against is difficult, and I’m sure that they have got people in all events,” Seal said. “For distance guys, it’s going to be difficult and the breastrokers will have a big challenge too, but they have got a lot of great guys across the board.”
For some of the young guys like sophomore sprinter Mossimo Chavez, the excitement to travel to Ann Arbor and face some of the best swimmers in the country is high.
“I know they have a top sprinter nationally, so there is a chance he will take the 50 freestyle and 100 freestyle”, Chavez said. “We just have to go into it like it’s a championship meet. I’ve never been to Michigan, so it’s more exciting than it is intimidating.”
Along with Michigan’s talented team, the atmosphere in Ann Arbor is also an upper hand for the home team, Seal said.
“The coach there, Mike Bottom, is really good at getting a big crowd there and obviously, they are all Michigan fans, so it’s pretty loud for the other side,” Seal said. “It will still be a lot of fun.”
The Buckeyes are 6-0 in dual meets this season and are headed to Ann Arbor with confidence, sticking to the plan they have had all season: keep winning.
“We just focus on getting ready with the team right before the meet and having the whole mentality of its one of the biggest rivalries in the nation, so you are going to need to be able to race,” Seal said.
The meet is scheduled to start at 6 p.m. Friday evening.