COLUMBUS, Ohio – Hunter Armstrong, the rising junior on the Ohio State University men’s swimming team from Dover, Ohio, is officially a member of the United States Olympic Swimming Team. He will be recognized and introduced with the team tonight – Sunday – during the final swims of the these U.S. Olympic Trials, which are taking place in Omaha, Neb., at the CHI Health Center. NBC will have live coverage at 8 p.m. EDT
The top two individuals per event, and up to the top six in the 100- and 200-meter freestyle events for relay purposes, make the Olympic team, should enough swimmers make it in enough events to keep the roster at or below 26 swimmers.
Armstrong made the team in the 100 backstroke with a terrific personal-best swim of 52.48 in the finals Tuesday evening to finish second to 2016 100 and 200 backstroke gold medalist and world-record holder Ryan Murphy, who won in 52.33. Armstrong qualified second for the finals the day prior with a personal best of 52.67 that lasted for all of 24 hours.
“We are so incredibly thrilled for Hunter and the opportunity he now has to represent the United States at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics,” Bill Dorenkott, Ohio State director of swimming and diving said. “He is swimming extremely well and is within striking distance of the world record (51.97 set by Murphy in 2016). I think he will have some terrific Olympic Games swims.”
Armstrong is the first Ohio State male swimmer to make the U.S. Olympic swimming team in 65 years, or since the 1956 Summer Olympics in Melbourne, Australia, when Ford Kono, George Onekea, Yoshi Oyakawa and Albert Wiggins represented Ohio State for the U.S.A.
Off to Hawai’i
Ohio State’s Olympic Trials contingent of swimmers – 12 Buckeyes competed at these Wave II trials – and coaches will return to Columbus Monday. Armstrong will continue his training for a short while in Columbus before travelling to Hawai’i June 27, where Team U.S.A. will convene a training camp before heading to Tokyo.
Charlie Clark in 1,500 Finals Tonight
Rising sophomore Charlie Clark, from Sandusky, Ohio and Perkins High School, will swim in the finals of the 1,500 meters tonight at the Olympic Trials. Clark placed sixth overall Saturday in the 1,500 prelims, just missing a personal best with a time of 15:22.01.
The 2020 Tokyo Olympics
The Olympic Games are officially branded as the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, even though they are taking place in 2021 because of last year’s postponement. The Tokyo Olympics begin Friday, July 23, with the opening ceremony at Tokyo’s Olympic Stadium. The opening ceremony will take place at 8 p.m. local time in Japan, which is 7 a.m. EDT in the United States. Olympic swimming runs July 24 through Aug. 1.
Armstrong in 2021
Armstrong was a force for Ohio State at the 2021 Big Ten championships, where the team finished third, and the 2021 NCAA championships, when Ohio State finished seventh for its best back-to-back NCAA finishes in 58 years (Ohio State was ninth in 2019). He scored in seven events at Big Tens, including taking second in the 100 backstroke, third in the 100 free and fourth in the 50 free, and then earned four All-America honors at the NCAA championships, including individually in the 100 backstroke.
A graduate of Dover (Ohio) High School, Armstrong attended and swam at West Virginia as a freshman before transferring to Ohio State in time for the start of the 2020-21 season. He was an OSU Scholar-Athlete this year – must have a cumulative grade point average of 3.00 and above to qualify – and is majoring in sport industry.