Arizona State Freshman Leon Marchand Swims 3:35 in 400 IM: 5th-Best Time Ever

By Braden Keith on SwimSwam

2021 NC STATE FALL INVITATIONAL

November 18-20, 2021
9:30 AM Prelims / 5:30 PM Finals
Greensboro Aquatic Center
SCY (25y)
Live Results
Meet Mobile: 2021 NC State GAC Fall Invitational
Teams: NC State, Arizona State, Army West Point, Duke, North Carolina, Penn State, Stanford, James Madison (diving only), and UNC-Wilmington (diving only)

19-year old Arizona State freshman Leon Marchand won the 400 IM on Friday evening at the NC State Fall Invitational in Greensboro, North Carolina. his time of 3:35.62 is the 5th-best time in NCAA or USA Swimming history, and the second-fastest time ever by a freshman.

What’s more, he did so in his second ever 400 IM race in yards, with his first coming in prelims on Friday morning.

Fastest 400 IMs in NCAA History: Performances

Chase Kalisz, Sr., Georgia, 2017 – 3:33.42
Chase Kasliz, So., Georgia, 2014 – 3:34.50

Carson Foster, Fr., Texas, 2020 – 3:35.27
Abrahm Devine, Jr., Stanford, 2018 – 3:35.29
Leon Marchand, Fr., Arizona State, 2021 – 3:35.62

By performers, Marchand now ranks 4th both in NCAA history and all-time.

His time is also faster than the 3:36.90 that Florida’s Bobby Finke swam to win the NCAA Championship last season. Foster’s time was the fastest of the season, but came in October and not at the NCAA Championships.

Splits Comparisons

Kalisz
Foster
Finke
Marchand

US Open Record
Freshman Record
NCAA Title Time
Wolfpack Invite

Fly
49.78
49.04
50.53
49.24

Back
53.9
53.93
55.44
55.35

Breast
58.61
60.92
61.49
60.61

Free
51.13
51.38
49.44
50.42

Final Time
3:33.42
3:35.27
3:36.90
3:35.62

The splits comparison shows how balanced Marchand is in his 400 IM. If he had to choose a stroke specialty, it would be breaststroke or butterfly, but he’s really a ‘true’ IM’er in the sense that he’s just very good at all 4 strokes and very good at putting them together into a complete race.

The Frenchman finished 6th in the 400 IM in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in 4:11.16, short of his 4:09 French Record, and was 18th in the 200 IM and 14th in the 200 fly.

Marchand is in his first few months of training and competing in yards and under Arizona State head coach Bob Bowman – most famous for his work as the head coach of the 400 IM World Record holder Michael Phelps.

Marchand isn’t the only new addition to Arizona State’s IM group this season either: former Arizona Wildcat David Schlicht joined the team this season. He finished 2nd on Thursday in 3:40.60. He was 4th in the 400 IM in a 3:39.89 last season. Arizona State’s Jarod Arroyo, who was a Tokyo 2020 Puerto Rican Olympian, finished 4th in 3:45.89. That’s just .08 seconds slower than his lifetime best from March.

Read the full story on SwimSwam: Arizona State Freshman Leon Marchand Swims 3:35 in 400 IM: 5th-Best Time Ever

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