2024 Men’s NCAA Data Visualization Disguises The Close Race For A Trophy In Indianapolis

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2024 MEN’S NCAA SWIMMING AND DIVING CHAMPIONSHIPS

The 2024 Men’s Division I NCAA Championships are fast approaching. We’ve scored the official psych sheets so now let’s take a look at how the meet would turn out if everything happened the way it’s projected to on paper, according to the official pre-scratch psych sheets.

It’s important to keep in mind that the psych sheet does not include diving points.

Division I Men’s NCAA Championship Scored Psych Sheet: Top 20 Teams

Arizona State is expected to claim their first NCAA championship. They’re projected to control the meet from the first event and earn 538 over the course of the four days. That they’re projected to dominate the championships is a testament to their in-season speed and the team’s exceptional performance on the way to their second straight PAC-12 title. They’re expected to outscore Florida by 95 points and Cal by 240 points.

Scored psych sheets are valuable because even though the meet isn’t swum on paper, they give us a reliable estimate about how the course of the meet is going to go. However, this year the numbers are more artificial than they usually are because Cal opted to not bring many of their stars to PAC-12s. That decision affects the swimmers’ individual seeds and the Golden Bears’ relay entry times and therefore the team’s projected points.

Cal’s projected point total could be viewed less as an estimate and more as a starting point, which affects everyone else’s points total as well. There’s only a finite number of points on offer, so if Cal is going to earn more, they have to come from somewhere.

ASU has flexed their speed and depth all season, but it’s unlikely that they’ll run away with the title to this degree.

Division I Men’s NCAA Championship Scored Psych Sheet: Top 12 Teams

This closer look at the top 12 teams shows a chaotic race for positioning within the top 10. ASU is expected to separate itself from the pack early and the visualization also shows daylight for Florida, Cal, and NC State compared with the rest of the top 12 teams.

Meanwhile, Tennessee and Indiana are expected to finish 5th and 6th, holding off Virginia Tech, Georgia, and Stanford. While the data shows how competitive the race for a top 10 finish will be, it doesn’t show as close a race for the top 5 as we expect in practice. That’s where both Cal’s performances and diving is really going to come into play (diving especially for Indiana).

Division I Men’s NCAA Championship Scored Psych Sheet: Top 12 Teams Ranked

Watching the visualization of the top 12 teams from their ranks rather than points gives us an even closer look at the race for the top 10. It’s why we chose to display the top 12 teams, because it shows that both Texas and Auburn are expected to be ahead of Notre Dame heading into the final relay. But Notre Dame’s sprint freestylers are expected to show out and push the Fighting Irish into the top 10.

These ranks also show off the strengths and weaknesses of each team. One of the most dramatic examples is the spike in Tennessee’s placement from 9th to 6th after the 50 freestyle.

Georgia’s 200 backstrokers are projected to give the Dawgs a boost at the start of the final day, but they aren’t expected to hold onto that 5th place spot. On the flip side, Indiana’s strength in the 200 breast and 200 fly lets them finish off the meet strong and move up the standings.


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