Any time a Michigan team faces Ohio State, intensity is sure to be at its peak. When the two swimming and diving teams, both ranked in the top 10, face off this weekend, it will be no different.
On Friday and Saturday at Canham Natatorium, the top-ranked Wolverines (4-0 Big Ten, 6-0 overall) will take on the 10th-ranked Buckeyes (1-1 , 8-1) in a two-day dual meet.
Despite the excitement of the rivalry and the idea of putting the team’s undefeated record on the line, senior Miguel Ortiz, reigning Big Ten Swimmer of the Week, is taking it all in stride.
“We’re pretty confident about this weekend,” Ortiz said. “We’ve been training hard. I mean it is Ohio State, but we’ve been trying hard every meet, so I don’t think there’s any difference.”
While they are taking the season one meet at a time, Ortiz and the Wolverines are also looking forward to the future. They hope to remain unbeaten and carry that momentum late into the season.
“We’re trying to win Big Tens and use that as a stepping stone to the NCAAs,” Ortiz said. “We’re definitely trying to get the championship title this year. We have a really good team with a lot of depth, so I’m really excited.”
Historically, Michigan boasts an all-time record of 64-11-2 against the Buckeyes and hasn’t lost to its rivals in more than 20 years. But with a fierce rivalry and two powerhouse programs competing, these types of records rarely mean much once the meet begins.
While the upcoming contest between the Wolverines and Ohio State is important to all the members of the swimming & diving team, it’ll be particularly special for the athletes that have spent the past four years suiting up for the maize and blue. This weekend’s matchup will involve the team’s senior swimmers honored before the meet.
“We have a class motto of ‘Those who stay will be champions’, and the present seniors have definitely been following that motto throughout the four years we’ve been here,” Ortiz said. “I’m just excited to see all of the seniors line up in front of everyone and be recognized.”