UW To Host 2008 NCAA Men's Swimming & Diving Championships

Sept. 28, 2005

SEATTLE-- The National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) announced today that Washington has been selected to host the 2008 NCAA Men's Swimming and Diving Championships at the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatics Center in Federal Way. The meet is scheduled for March 27-29. This will mark the third time Washington has hosted the event. The Huskies held the championship in 1947 and 1961 and at their on-campus pool.

The NCAA Championship will also be the first hosted by Washington since the 2002 Women's Golf Championships was held at Washington National Golf Club in Auburn.

'We are thrilled and honored to have an opportunity to host the men's NCAA Championships, especially during an Olympic year,' said Washington head coach Mickey Wender. 'It's been a longtime goal to host this event, not just for the University of Washington, but for the Northwest swimming community as a whole. This is one of the premier swimming regions in the country and this will be a great showcase of our sport.'

Washington has sponsored men's swimming since 1932 and added a women's program in 1975. Wender has been at the helm of the Husky program since 1998 and has produced 15 All-Americans and has consistently sent student-athletes to compete at the NCAA Championships. Washington's best team finishes at the national meet include a 19th place finish by the 2003 women's team and a 25th place finish by the 2004 men's team.

The Seattle Sports Commission (SSC), a subsidiary of Seattle's Convention & Visitors Bureau, will serve as the host agency for the event. Members of Pacific Northwest Swimming and the Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center in Federal Way will provide a strong background in meet management.

'The Greater Seattle area is an ideal location for hosting swimming championship events,' Ralph Morton, executive director for the Seattle Sports Commission said, 'with the facilities, accommodations, attractions and support necessary to host this level of competition.'

The Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatics Center has become the premier competition site in Washington state and its world-class facility is one of the best in the nation. Located in Federal Way, approximately 26 miles south of the UW campus, the Aquatics Center was built to accommodate the 1990 Goodwill Games swimming and diving events. The facility features eight nine-foot lanes 25-yards in length and can seat up to 2,500 spectators.

'King County is honored and very excited to have been chosen as the site of the 2008 Men's NCAA Championships,' King County Executive Ron Sims said. 'It is considered the premier men's event each year and we will be seeing the country's top swimmers as they prepare for the 2008 Beijing Summer Games.'

'From the committee's standpoint, we are excited about going to Seattle,' John Lyons, chairman of the Men's and Women's NCAA Division I Swimming Committee said. 'The Weyerhaeuser King County Aquatic Center is first rate and world class, and we were unanimous about our decision. It has been a long time since we have been to the West Coast.'

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