Feb. 23, 2004
Tennessee's swimming and diving team travels to Athens, Ga., to compete in the Southeastern Conference championships at Gabrielsen Natatorium Feb. 25-28.
The Vols already have 10 individuals qualified for the national championships going into this week's conference championship competition.
"We have roughly one-half of the team prepared for championship swimming and the other half swimming unrested and unshaved as they have their eyes set on NCAAs," UT head coach John Trembley said. "We anticipate not being as competitive as the past, but we are still looking for some great individual performances."
Along with the 50-yard freestyle, 400-yard individual medley and the 100-yard backstroke, the men's three-meter springboard competition will be held Wednesday.
"The competition is going to be extremely tough," UT head diving coach Dave Parrington said. "There is more depth in our conference this year than I've seen in previous years. It is possible that the top eight on the springboard this week may also be the same top eight that appear in the finals at the NCAA Championships."
Junior Phillip Jones will try to add another title to his list of achievements Wednesday by winning an SEC crown. Jones, who won the NCAA title on the 3-meter board last year, will push to finish stronger than his third-place finish at the conference championships last year. One of his toughest competitors, freshman Jevon Tarantino, is also his teammate. Tarantino was the two-time Florida high school state champion on the one-meter board and represented the USA Team at the 2001 Goodwill Games.
"I would expect Phillip and Jevon both to be right in the mix, fighting for the top spots on both springboard events this weekend," Parrington said.