ANNAPOLIS, Md. – Gallaudet University men’s swimmer Brian Bennett (Colorado Springs, Colo.) will become the first Bison ever to compete at the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) swimming and diving open championships as he earned a spot in the 200-yard freestyle event. The senior left Gallaudet on Friday en route to Annapolis, Md., and the United States Naval Academy, the host of this year’s ECAC swimming championships, to swim at at Lejeune Hall.
Bennett will compete against 67 other swimmers in the 200 freestyle on Saturday, Feb. 25. Bennett will go up against a field dominated by Division I swimmers from schools like Army, Bucknell, Columbia, Navy, Rider, Towson, to name a few. The 200 freestyle preliminaries are scheduled to start at 10 a.m. with the 16 top finishers comprising the finalists scheduled to compete again later that evening at 6 p.m. for the championship in that event.
Bennett helped to lead Gallaudet to a second straight North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) championship last weekend in Cazenovia, N.Y. Bennett was named the NEAC Men’s Swimmer of the Year for a second time in a row. Bennett, a transfer student from Northern Colorado, put together an incredible career at Gallaudet in just two seasons. He re-wrote the GU record book as he leaves with six individual event records and was part of four record-setting relays.
The ECAC championship field will consist of 36 member institutions including 2011 defending men’s champion Navy and women’s runner-up Harvard University.
Brian Bennett shakes hands with Gallaudet President Alan Hurwitz before leaving Friday.
Athletic Director Michael Weinstock is on the far left, Swim Coach Bill Snape is on the far right.
About the ECAC
The ECAC is the nation's largest athletic and the only multi-divisional conference in the country with approximately 300 Division I, II, and III colleges and universities. The ECAC stretches from Maine to North Carolina and westerly to Illinois. Established in 1938, the ECAC, a non-profit service organization, sponsors nearly 100 championships in 37 men's and women's sports and assigns more than 4,400 officials in 12 sports. The ECAC also administers nine affiliate sports organizations and six playing leagues, and through the public relations arm of the conference, more than 2,000 student-athletes are recognized annually. Finally, the ECAC serves as the primary conference for select members in the sports of men's ice hockey, women's ice hockey, and men's lacrosse. For more information about the ECAC please visit its website www.ecac.org.
About Lejeune Hall
Lejeune Hall serves as the home of Navy Swimming and Diving. The facility is named after the 13th Commandant of the Marine Corps, Lieutenant General John Archer Lejeune, a member of the Naval Academy Class of 1888. It is the first building at the academy to be named for a Marine Corps officer. The $13.5 million facility opened in 1982 and underwent extensive renovations following the 2009 season. The $1 million project featured a new diving tower including 5-, 7.5- and 10-meter diving platforms as well as new 1 and 3-meter springboards. In addition, the diving wall has three underwater observation windows.