TEMPE, Ariz. – Léon Marchand and in the process of helping the Sun Devils to the highest NCAA championship finish in program history Jonny Kulow will take home additional hardware.
Marchand was named Pac-12 men’s swimmer of the year, while Kulow was voted freshman of the year, the conference announced Thursday.
The second sensation Marchand is the league’s top swimmer for the second straight year, while Kulow becomes the league’s fourth sun devil Bob Bowman Era to win Rookie of the Year.
History of ASU’s Pac-12 Major Award | Complete Pac-12 release
Marchand, who was named Men’s Swimmer of the Year by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) earlier this week, won the three individual events he competed in at the recent NCAA championships.
He won the 200 IM (1:36.34), 200 breaststroke (1:46.91), and 400 IM (3:28.82), setting new NCAA records in each event. His five career NCAA titles are the most in Sun Devil team history, breaking with diver Joona Puhakka (4).
“Léon has taken his training to a new level this year and the results have been spectacular,” said the head coach Bob Bowman called. “His ability to consistently show record pace is a testament to his focus under pressure and strong desire to help our team succeed.”
At the Pac-12 championships in early March, Marchand won the 200 IM, 400 IM, 200 breaststroke, 200 medley relay, 400 medley relay and 800 free relay to help the Sun Devils win the first conference championship in program history. Now a perfect 6-for-6 in individual competitions at Pac-12s, he was also named the meet’s swimmer for the second year in a row.
Coupled with Marchand’s excellence, the Sun Devils were also bolstered by the efforts of Kulow, who was great on his early trips to the Pac-12 and NCAA championships. At Pac-12s in early March, Kulow was a member of the winning 200 medley relay team while also finishing 2nd in the 200 Free Relay, fourth in the 50 Free Relay, eighth in the 100 Free Relay and eleventh in the 200 Free Relay.
The product of Lander, Wyoming, was a first-team All-American in four events (200 free relay, 200 medley relay, 400 free relay, and 400 medley relay) at the NCAA championships, in addition to second-team honors in the 100 free.
In Team’s last three matches of the season against Stanford, Cal and Arizona, Kulow notched a win and five top-five finishes, paving the way for a postseason breakthrough.
“Jonny has improved incredibly and shown real balance in his first encounters between Pac-12 and the NCAA Championship,” Bowman said. “He’s a leader in the top rookie class in the country and is just beginning to see what he can do in the pool.”
The Sun Devil Rookies by Kulow, Owen McDonald, Zalan Sarkany And Hubert Kos scored the most points of any freshman class at the NCAA championships as ASU (81) led Florida (73) and Tennessee (27).
Since the Sun Devils did not compete in the 2021 Pac-12 Championships, they have now won Freshman of the Year honors in each of the last three conference meetings they have competed in.
Kulow joins Marchand (2022), Jack Dolan (2020) and Cameron Craig (2017) for Freshman of the Year.
SUN DEVIL PAC-12 SWIMMER OF THE YEAR FOR MEN
Leon Marchand, 2023
Leon Marchand, 2022
Francisco Sanchez, 1996 (co-winner with Californian Ugur Taner)
Mike Orn, 1983 (co-winner with Stanford’s Dave Bottom)
SUN DEVIL MEN’S PAC-12 REVOLUTIONARY/NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR
Leon Marchand, 2022
Cameron Craig, 2017