The University of Michigan’s rivalry in the pool against the Hoosiers this year has stayed competitive.
At 11 a.m. Saturday in Counsilman-Billingsley Aquatic Center, the rivalry will be back on display.
With tight finishes for both the Hoosier men (a 150-150 tie) and women (a 188-182 loss) against the Wolverines in October and November, the teams have made it clear that patrons get a show every time these two teams swim against each other.
The two programs rank in the top 15 in the nation according to TRY/College Swim Coaches Association of America Dual Meet Poll. Both IU men and women are ranked 14th, while the Wolverines are eighth and 15th, respectively.
The IU women’s team will focus on relays and starting the meet off strong. A strong second day wasn’t enough to overcome a less than stellar first day for the women the last time the Hoosiers met the Wolverines. The men’s team has made a couple of lineup changes and looks to utilize depth, which has improved since November.
“Since we swam against them earlier in the year, it’s going to be a great benchmark,” head coach Ray Looze said.
Since Dec. 27, the swimmers and divers have gone through rigorous training. Although they may be tired from the past couple of weeks, the teams always look forward to facing the rival Wolverines.
After the tie in November, senior Titus Knight described the rivalry as “sort of a deep hatred,” and Looze described the rivalry as “fierce” throughout the last couple of years.
Michigan will battle to keep its success against IU going, while the Hoosiers look to make a statement against another Big Ten contender.
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IU had a chance at the end of the game to take the lead, but was unable to do so.
The men’s team finished second in the Illini Open.
IU was already guaranteed the eight seed in the conference tournament.