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Oct. 24, 2012

COLUMBIA, S.C. — The South Carolina men’s swimming and diving team is ranked No. 12 in the first College Swimming Coaches Association of America Division I Team Rankings, the CSCAA announced late Tuesday.

The ranking is the highest of head coach McGee Moody’s tenure at South Carolina. It’s also the highest since the 2002 squad was ranked eighth at the end of the regular season.

“We are excited with where our men are,” Moody said. “With some of the fastest times in the country, our ultimate goal is still hanging out there. We are going to continue to work hard and stay humble with this whole thing. I’m very proud of our guys and the hard work that they’ve put in. Now it’s time to appreciate this for a day or two and move forward and keep working hard.”

The Gamecocks earned their ranking after knocking off No. 21 Texas A&M (160-140) and falling to No. 9 North Carolina (168-132) to open the 2012-13 season. In that meet, South Carolina produced several of the nation’s fastest times, including three by junior Michael Flach. A native of Annandale, Va., Flach is ranked No. 6 in the 200-yard freestyle (1:38.56), ninth in the 200-yard butterfly (1:48.69) and 12th in the 200-yard IM (1:50.95). Freshman Marwan El Kamash (ninth-1000 freestyle, 15th-500 freestyle) and juniors Matt Navata (11th-200 breaststroke, 15th-200 IM) and Gerard Rodriguez (10th-200 freestyle) have also recorded ranked times.

The CSCAA Team Rankings are voted on by nine CSCAA-member coaches and one media member. The 2012-13 rankings will be released on a regular basis throughout the season, alternating weeks between a men’s and a women’s team ranking.

This year’s poll is different than previous seasons in that the poll is not designed to predict the results of the NCAA Championship. The purpose is to rank in order which teams would win head-to-head against other teams in the country. Rankings are based on performances that have taken place since the previous poll and include dual meets and invitationals.

South Carolina returns to action on Friday against top-ranked Florida. The meet is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. at the Blatt P.E. Center/Carolina Natatorium.

NCAA Division 1 Men’s Swimming and Diving Ranking as of October 23, 2012
1. Florida (0-0) (Unanimous)
2. Michigan (2-0)
3. Stanford (0-0)
4. Southern California (1-0)
5. Texas (0-0)
6. Auburn (2-0)
7. California (1-0)
8. Indiana (2-0)
t9. North Carolina (2-0)
t9. Georgia (1-0)
11. Arizona (1-0)
12. South Carolina (1-1)
13. Minnesota (0-1)
14. NC State (0-1)
15. Florida State (1-0)
16. Louisville (1-0)
17. Penn State (1-0)
18. Purdue (0-0)
19. Iowa (1-0)
20. Alabama (1-1)
21. Texas A&M (0-2)
22. LSU (1-1)
23. Missouri State (0-1)
24. Tennessee (2-1)
25. Wisconsin (3-1)

Also Receiving Votes: Georgia Tech, SMU, Virginia Tech, Missouri, Duke, William & Mary, UC Santa Barbara, Michigan State, Northwestern