Senior Bill Bass

No. 20 Irish Starts Season's Second Half At Cleveland State

Jan. 17, 2013

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame men’s swimming and diving team returns to dual meet competition at Cleveland State Friday at 4 p.m. inside the Robert F. Busbey Natatorium.

“The first meet ever held in the Rolfs Aquatics Center (Dec. 8, 1985) was Notre Dame-Cleveland State,” Fighting Irish head coach Tim Welsh says. “We have liked continuing this relationship, and Cleveland State is the only team on our schedule this year that was on the schedule when our pool opened in 1985.”

Notre Dame (5-0), ranked 20th in the most recent College Swimming Coaches Association of America poll, is off to its best start since the 2006-07 season, when the team also opened with five straight dual victories.

The Fighting Irish recently returned from the program’s annual winter training trip to Puerto Rico. Notre Dame won the men’s title at the exhibition Copa Coqui swim meet for the third consecutive season, scoring 64 points to best Army (51) and Connecticut (21) Jan. 5 at the Encantata Sports Center in Trujillo Alto, Puerto Rico. Colin Babcock (200 IM), Cameron Miller (100 breast) and Bogac Ayhan (100 back) all claimed individual race wins.

Notre Dame owns a 27-10 all-time dual record against Cleveland State, including a 24-1 mark during the Welsh era. The Vikings have not defeated the Fighting Irish since earning a 138-105 decision at the Busbey Natatorium Feb. 4, 1995. Notre Dame outlasted Cleveland State, Oakland and IUPUI to win the Dennis Stark Relays earlier this season at the Rolfs Aquatic Center (Nov. 12).

“Cleveland State has a great, fast facility,” Welsh says. “If you are ready to swim fast, you will swim fast at Cleveland State. We will go there looking to do that.”