NCAA: Joseph Schooling loses 100 butterfly title and record to Caeleb Dressel

Quah Zheng Wen (in yellow cap) and Joseph Schooling after the 100 yard butterfly at the NCAA swimming championships. Photo: Syahir Ezekiel/The Schooling Effect

Joseph Schooling vowed to go under 44 seconds in the 100 yard butterfly, and clocked 43.75s in the final, but was dethroned by Caeleb Dressel in a big upset at the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) swimming and diving championships on Friday (Saturday morning Singapore time). Schooling was the defending champion in the event.

Dressel of the University of Florida pipped Schooling to win in 43.58s, erasing Schooling’s mark of 44.01s. It is also a new American record. Schooling’s University of Texas team mate Jack Conger took third place in 44.35s. Dressel, a double relay gold medallist at the Rio Olympics, also won the 50 free on Thursday in record time. Schooling said, “I did my best today in the 100 Fly. Was definitely looking to go under 44, which I did, and finish 1-2 with Jack. There were a couple of things which I could have executed better but well done to Caeleb for winning the event and breaking the NCAA record.”

Fellow Singaporean Quah Zheng Wen came in fifth in 45.06s.

The third day of the inter-college swim meet at the IU Natatorium ended on a high for the University of Texas. The quartet of Schooling, John Shebat, Will Licon and Brett Ringgold won the 200 yard medley relay ahead of the University of Alabama and UC Berkeley in a new NCAA and US Open record of 1:21.54, erasing the previous mark of 1:22.27. Schooling said, “The 200 medley relay was phenomenal. We knew we wanted this record to go down and similar to yesterday’s 400 medley relay, we went all out. Can’t be happier for the boys and the team. We are 138.5 points ahead of second place California going into the final day so I think we are doing pretty good.”

Points are awarded for individual swims and relays, and the championship is awarded to the university which collects the most points at the end of the meet.