Nov. 9, 2006

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The No. 13 Ohio State men’s swimming and diving team will open the 2006-07 season against Kenyon, Friday at 6 p.m., at the McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion.

Men’s swimming head coach Bill Wadley, has high hopes for the 2006-07 season. Wadley anticipates his upperclassmen to provide the leadership for another successful season.

“You couldn’t ask for better leadership,” Wadley said. “We have three All-Americans coming back and this year we have something else to benefit us – exceptional diving. We signed the No. 1 diver in America and have a transfer from Tennessee that is quite good. We would like to break every school record this year. Since we broke seven last year we have a big challenge in front of us.”

A Look At Kenyon
Jim Steen returned for his 30th year as Kenyon’s head swimming coach. Under his guidance, the men have won 24 consecutive NCAA Division III championships.

The Lords enter the meet with a 0-2 record. The men were defeated in the first meet against Ohio University (191.5-99.5) as well as the second against Denison (140-99).

Last Time vs. The Lords
The Buckeyes and Kenyon last met Nov. 19, 2005 in Columbus. The Buckeyes won the dual meet, claiming eight of the 11 events (105-94). Ohio State took the first four spots in the 200-yard freestyle and the first three places in the 100-yard freestyle. The Buckeyes also claimed the first two spots in both the 200-yard butterfly and 50-yard freestyle.

A Look At Miami
Jim Steen returned for his 22nd year as head swimming coach for Miami. Last season, he guided the men to a Mid American Conference title and was chosen as the MAC coach of the year.

The RedHawks have compiled a 1-1 record so far this season. The men defeated Ball State (170.5-123.5), but suffered a loss to Western Kentucky (130-113). Sophomore diver Chris Heaton was named the Nov. 6 MAC swimming and diving athlete of the week for consecutively resetting the 3-meter varsity diving record.

Last Time Out vs. The RedHawks
The Buckeyes and the RedHawks last met in Columbus Nov. 6, 2004. The Buckeyes won the dual meet, claiming 12 of the 13 events (139-97). Joe Doyle, Matt Voelker and Wes Wieser each won two events at the meet. Other Buckeyes to win events were Nate King, R.J. Lemyre, Felipe Travesso and former swimmer Rob Tiernan. The competition was the first dual meet swum in the McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion.

Ohio State returns a strong sprint freestyle group. Senior Joe Doyle will lead the Buckeyes, along with junior Matt Voelker. Both men finalled at the 2006 Big Ten Championships in the 50-yard freestyle. Incoming freshmen Joel Elber, Michael Kelley and Alex Stuart and sophomores Mike Kordel and Yannick van Heers will be looked upon to add depth to the sprint events.

Doyle returns as the team’s fastest 200-yard freestyler (1:40.18). Joining him will be sophomores Jake Busch and Matthias Sigrist along with freshmen George Markovic and Matt Barr.

Freshman Mark Neiman joins the Buckeyes as the team’s fastest miler, swimming the race in 15:21. Jake Busch, Ryan Stoneburg and Jordan Hershberger also will compete in the distance events.

The backstroke events will remain competitive for the Buckeyes with the return of All-Americans R.J. Lemyre and Nate King. Both men swam under the previous Ohio State school record in the 100-yard backstroke last season.

Dan Novak also returns from an excellent sophomore season having gone 48.70 in the event. Freshmen Joel Elber and Scott Bey will add assist in the 100-yard backstroke while George Markovic will contribute to the 200-yard distance.

Ohio State returns last season’s second-fastest 100-yard breaststroker Felipe Travesso. Sophomores Andy Johnson, Spencer Hanson and Scott Blake will aid Travesso. Incoming freshman Daniel Melnik and Sam Pelkey are expected to immediately impact the group as they are already national-level swimmers.

Joe Doyle will once again be looked upon to lead the 100-yard butterfly. He recorded a school record in the event (47.27) last season. Helping Doyle in the sprint fly event will be incoming freshman Chandler West from Atlanta, Ga.

The responsibility of the 200-yard butterfly will rest on the shoulders of Matthias Sigrist, Chandler West, Andrew Zaydak and Ryan Stoneburg. Sigrist contributed points at the Big Ten championships in the event with his 11th place finish.

Individual Medley
The medley group remains solid for the Buckeyes, with two of last season’s top three swimmers returning to compete. Nate King won the 200-yard individual medley four times and competed in the event at the NCAA championships. Scoring points for Ohio State at six dual-meets, Dan Novak will assist King in the 200-yard distance.

King also will swim the 400-yard distance. He placed fourth in the event at Big Tens and 20th at the national championship meet. Also swimming the event will be Tyler King and developing talents, Andrew Olson and Sam Pelkey.

On The Boards
Ohio State will showcase arguably the strongest men’s diving program in the country. Leading the diving corps will be returning All-American Kellen Harkness. The senior diver was the 2005-06 Big Ten silver medalist on the 3-meter springboard. Nick Hanneman will return to action after red-shirting last season. He had a breakout year during the 2004-05 season with a 14th-place finish at the NCAA championships.

Wes Weiser will lead the group on the platform. Earlier this year, he finished eighth in the 10-meter platform at his first U.S. Diving championships.

Assisting the veterans will be newcomers Burkley Showe and Ryan Jefferson. Showe, a transfer from Tennessee, kick starts his Buckeye career with a memorable performance at the 2006 Summer U.S. Diving Championships. He took away the silver medal on the 1-meter springboard and finished fourth on the 3-meter springboard. Jefferson comes to Ohio State as the No. 1 high school diving prospect. He is expected to make an immediate contribution to the program as he battles his teammates for Big Ten and NCAA championship titles.

The 2006-07 OSU Schedule
This year’s schedule will provide many challenges for Ohio State. The season will open with three dual-meets at the McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion. The team will compete against its first conference opponent in the first month of competition with a meet against Purdue, Nov. 17. The Buckeyes will wrap up the dual-meet season in January with three home conference meets and three away meets.

The Buckeyes will take a break from the dual-meet season to host the second annual Ohio State Swimming and Diving Invitational, Dec. 1-3. Post-season action will begin in February when Ohio State hosts the 2007 Big Ten Championships. The divers will travel to Michigan to compete at the NCAA zone qualifying meet, March 2-4. The season will culminate at the NCAA championships in Minneapolis, Minn., March 15-17.

“We are so excited to have a chance to swim the Big Ten championships in our pool,” Wadley said. “We would really hope that this experience for our team will be a memorable moment.

Coach Bill Wadley
Bill Wadley enters his 18th year as the men’s head swimming coach. He has compiled a record of 155-27 (.85) at the helm of the Buckeyes and a 176-37 (.826) overall record in 20 years as a college head coach.

Wadley has coached 13 Olympians and his teams have been ranked in the NCAA Top 25 for 13 of the past 17 seasons. Producing more than 30 world ranked swimmers in his coaching career, 13 of his student-athletes have reached the Olympic level.

A seasoned coach, Wadley has represented the United States on numerous occasions. He has coached the 1986 Olympic Festival and the 1988 and 1992 Gold Medal teams comprised of top non-collegiate swimmers in preparation for the Olympics. In 1991, Wadley coached the U.S. team at the World University Games and in 1993 was coach of the U.S. National Team training camp. Wadley was chosen to head men’s coach of the 1998 Goodwill Games team that broke seven Goodwill Games records

Most recently, Wadley was picked as an assistant coach for the 2007 World University Games and was elected president of the American Swimming Coaches Association in both 2005 and 2006.

About Coach Panzano
Vince Panzano is in his 29th season as coach of the Ohio State men’s and women’s diving teams. Panzano, who was named the 2004 Big Ten Diving Coach of the Year for the eighth time in his career, has produced one world champion, one junior world champion, two Olympic medalists, 22 U.S. Diving champions, 10 NCAA champions, 14 NCAA runners-up, 46 Big Ten champions and 68 NCAA All-Americans.

Up Next
The Buckeyes will join the women at home Nov. 17 for a coed meet against Purdue at 5 p.m.