Daily Dawg Thread: June 15, 2024

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Daily Dawg Thread: June 15, 2024

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Daily Dawg Thread: June 15, 2024

Georgia swimmers to compete in the 2024 United States Olympic Swimming Trials

Georgia swimmer Elizabeth Tilt during the 2024 Bulldog Invitational Last Chance Meet in Bauerle Pool inside Gabrielsen Natatorium at the Ramsey Student Center in Athens, Ga., on Sunday, March 3, 2024. (Tony Walsh/UGAAA)

The University of Georgia swimming programs look to continue their proud Olympic tradition with the 2024 United States Olympic Swimming Trials, running June 15-23 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana.





Each day of Trials competition will feature a prelims session at 11 a.m. EDT, followed by finals at 8 p.m. Prelims will stream live on Peacock, with finals airing live on NBC and Peacock.

The top-two finishers in each of the 28 events will automatically qualify for the 2024 Summer Olympic Games in Paris, provided they post an Olympic-qualifying time. Additional swimmers will be eligible for relay nominations in the 100-meter and 200-meter freestyle.

Georgia will be well-represented in Indianapolis with 32 current, former, and future athletes competing over the eight days of action. In 2021, the Bulldogs placed seven swimmers on the U.S. squad, the most of any collegiate program. Overall, Georgia has produced 42 U.S. Olympic swimmers, sending at least five to the past four games.





Georgia alum Nic Fink leads a strong group of Bulldog alumni in the field, entering Saturday’s opening day with the top seed in the 100m breaststroke as he looks to reach his second Olympics. Fellow alums Chase Kalisz, Jay Litherland, and Olivia Smoliga will each attempt to qualify for their third Olympics, with Kalisz and Litherland entering as reigning gold and silver medalists in the 400m IM. Kalisz is seeded second in the 400 IM, followed by Litherland in third, while Smoliga ranks fourth in the 100m backstroke. 2022 graduate Dakota Luther enters with the #2 seed in the 200m butterfly, putting her in position to make her first Olympic team.

Ian Grum leads the current group of Bulldogs with the fifth seed in the 200m backstroke, along with the sixth seed in the 400m IM. The recent graduate earned the silver medal in the 200 back at the Pan American Games in October. Rising senior Rachel Stege, a gold medalist at Pan Ams, holds a top-10 seed in three events, including sixth in the 1,500m freestyle, seventh in the 800m freestyle, and ninth in the 400m freestyle. Rising graduate Jake Magahey will also be a contender for Paris, entering Trials with the sixth seed in the 400m free.

Stege leads a strong Georgia distance group with five swimmers participating in Saturday’s women’s 400m freestyle prelims, including recent graduate Jillian Barczyk and rising senior Abby McCulloh, the NCAA champion in the 1,650-yard freestyle. All-American Luca Urlando seeks to reach Paris after narrowly missing qualification three years ago and will compete in four events.


Mia Abruzzo – 400m IM

Jillian Barczyk* – 200m Free, 400m Free, 800m Free

Reese Branzell – 50m Free, 100m Free, 200m Free

Callie Dickinson* – 100m Fly, 200m Fly, 200m IM

Dillon Downing* – 50m Free, 100m Free

Bradley Dunham* – 200m Free, 100m Back, 200m Back

Nic Fink* – 100m Breast, 200m Breast

Zach Franklin* – 100m Back

Shea Furse – 200m Free, 400m Free

Ian Grum* – 100m Back, 200m Back, 400m IM

Connor Haigh – 100m Breast, 200m Breast

Zoie Hartman* – 200m Free, 100m Breast, 200m Breast, 200m IM

Kyler Heffner^ – 800m Free, 1500m Free

Zach Hils* – 200m Free, 200m IM

Drew Hitchcock^ – 200m Fly, 200m IM, 400m IM

Helena Jones – 100m Free

Chase Kalisz* – 200m Fly, 200m IM, 400m IM

Marie Landreaneau^ – 200m Free

Jay Litherland* – 200m Back, 200m IM, 400m IM

Dakota Luther* – 100m Fly, 200m Fly

Jake Magahey – 200m Free, 400m Free

Eboni McCarty – 100m Back

Abby McCulloh – 400m Free, 800m Free, 1500m Free

Mitchell Norton – 200m Back

Sam Powe – 200m Back

Sloane Reinstein – 200m Free, 400m Free, 800m Free

Aaron Seymour – 100m Back

Miles Simon – 50m Free

Olivia Smoliga* – 50m Free, 100m Free, 100m Back

Rachel Stege – 200m Free, 400m Free, 800m Free, 1500m Free

Julianna Stephens – 50m Free

Luca Urlando – 200m Free, 400m Free, 100m Fly, 200m Fly

* Denotes alumni

^ Denotes incoming freshman

MBB: Savo Drezgic will reclassify to the Class of 2024 and has signed a letter of intent to join the Bulldogs this fall

Savo Drezgic, a consensus four-star prospect in the Class of 2025, will reclassify to the Class of 2024 and has signed a letter of intent to join the Georgia Bulldogs this fall, head coach Mike White announced on Friday. 

Drezgic, is a 6-3, 198-pound guard originally from Belgrade, Serbia, who played for DME Academy in Daytona Beach, Fla,, during the 2023-24 high school season. Among Class of 2025 prospects, he is currently ranked No. 31 by On3.com, No. 63 by 247Sports.com and No. 106 by rivals.com. Among point guards, Drezgic is listed No. 5 by On3.com, No. 10 by 247Sports.com and No. 20 by rivals.com.

Most recently, Drezgic earned all-tournament honors at a pair of prestigious European events this spring. 

In April, Drezgic led Serbia to a Silver Medal showing at the Albert Schweitzer U18 World Tournament in Manheim, Germay. He was Serbia’s second-leading scorer at 13.6 points per game and paced his team with averages of 4.7 assists and 2.1 steals in seven contests.

In March, Drezgic represented Partizan Belgrade in the 2024 Adidas Next Generation Tournament. He averaged team highs of 19.2 points, 7.8 rebounds, 5.2 assists and 2.8 steals over four outings, leading Partizan to a 3-1 record and third place in the eight-team qualifying event contested in Belgrade.

At DME, Drezgic averaged 13.4 points, 4.7 assists and 3.8 rebounds. DME finished the season with a 25-11 record, falling to Dream City Christian in the semifinals of the Grind Session Championship. Drezgic also was named to the all-tournament team at the Grind City Championship.

Before coming to DME, Drezgic played for Partizan last fall. He logged action in three ABA League outings and a pair of ABA League U19 matchups. Drezgic’s top performance featured 24 points, five rebounds, four steals and three assists in a U19 outing against Mega SM. He also made his debut in Serbia’s KLS league in May, with three points, two rebounds and an assist in Partizan’s 96-68 win over Mega BG.

Drezgic also was a standout for the Serbian National Team at the 2022 U16 European Championship, averaging a team-high 13.6 points as well as 4.4 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game.

Georgia’s incoming class now features nine newcomers – four high school prospects and five transfers. The Bulldogs’ recruiting class has been ranked among the nation’s best. Overall, the group is listed as high as No. 14 by 247Sports.com. The freshmen are ranked as high as No. 13 by both ESPN.com and rivals.com. The transfers have been tabbed as high as No. 8 by On3.com.

The previously announced new Bulldogs include:

• Justin Abson, a 6-9, 235-pound junior forward from Pompano Beach, Fla., who was named the 2024 Sun Belt Conference Defensive Player of the Year after finishing No. 4 nationally in blocked shots last season at Appalachian State. 

• Somto Cyril, a 6-10, 252-pound freshman center originally from Enugu, Nigeria, who has played with the Overtime Elite program in Atlanta for the past two seasons. He is ranked as high as the No. 42 recruit nationally by On3.com.

• RJ Godfrey, a 6-8, 228-pound junior forward from Suwanee, Ga., who was a two-time first-team all-state honoree at North Gwinnett High School and helped Clemson reach the “Elite Eight” of the 2024 NCAA Tournament.

• Jordan Kee, a 6-4, 175-pound freshman guard from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., who helped The Sagemont School capture the 2024 Class 2A state championship and has been ranked as high as the nation’s No. 15 combo guard in the Class of 2024.

• Tyrin Lawrence, a 6-4, 200-pound graduate guard from Monticello, Ga., who scored 1,000 points during his career at Vanderbilt and averaged a team-high 14.6 ppg in SEC play for the Commodores last season.

• Dakota Leffew, a 6-5, 185-pound graduate guard from Jonesboro, Ga., who earned first-team All-Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) honors last season after averaging 17.6 ppg as a senior at Mount St. Mary’s. 

• De’Shayne Montgomery, a 6-4, 190-pound sophomore guard from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., who won 2024 MAAC Rookie of the Year accolades and was named MAAC Rookie of the Week a school-record six times also playing for Mount St. Mary’s during 2023-24.

• Asa Newell, a 6-10, 215-pound freshman forward from Destin, Fla., who was ranked as the No. 12 prospect in Class of 2024 by ESPN.com, making him the Bulldogs’ second-highest ESPN recruit ever behind only Anthony Edwards. 

White has produced consistent improvement since being named Georgia’s head coach in March 2022. During his first season, the Bulldogs improved their regular-season win total from the previous year by 10 victories, the second biggest increase of any Power 6 program. Georgia earned its first postseason bid since 2017 last season and then advanced to the semifinals of the NIT. In the process, the Bulldogs posted their first 20-win season since 2016.

Charlie Condon adds another national award – the Bobby Bragan National Collegiate Slugger Award

Georgia’s All-America third baseman/outfielder Charlie Condon has been named the Bobby Bragan National Collegiate Slugger Award (BBNCSA) winner Friday in an announcement by the Bragan Youth Foundation.

As the nation’s top hitter, Condon will be honored at a Gala in the fall in Fort Worth, Texas. The BBNSCA is open to nominations from all Division I baseball programs and is based on performance at the plate, academics, and personal intergrity. The award began in 2017 (www.braganslugger.com) and is named for the former major league baseball player, manager and coach. The foundation was established in 1991 as an effort to encourage children to stay in school and pursue their educational and career dreams.

“We are honored to name Charlie Condon of Georgia as the 2024 Bobby Bragan National Collegiate Slugger Award presented by SR Bats,” said Tracy Taylor, Executive Director of the BBNCSA and Bragan Youth Foundation. “Charlie had a tremendous season, leading the nation in several offensive categories, being named the SEC Player of the Year and setting the BBCOR era home run record. We were fortunate to have Condon as a finalist last year (LSU’s Dylan Crews was the 2023 winner) and to watch him surpass his performance from 2023 was impressive.”

Condon, who posted one of the greatest seasons in college baseball history, becomes the first Bulldog to win the award. A member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll, he is a finance major. He could become just the third player in Division 1 history to lead the country in both batting average and home runs in the same season.

“I’m honored to be this year’s recipient of the Bobby Bragan National Collegiate Slugger Award,” said Condon. “It’s more than just what you do on the field, they consider academics and integrity, and my parents and coaches throughout my life have stressed that. It’s an important part of being a good teammate too.”

A 6-6, 216-pound native of Marietta, Ga., Condon currently leads the NCAA in batting (.443), home runs (a BBCOR-era record 37), slugging percentage (1.009), total bases (233) and OPS (1.565). The 2024 SEC Player of the Year, he ranked third nationally in on-base percentage (.566) and posted a team-high 57 walks, including 28 intentional free passes. He had seven multi-home run games and homered in eight consecutive contests from April 26-May 9, one shy of the NCAA record. He made starts at third base, first base and all three outfield positions for the eighth-ranked Bulldogs who finished 43-17 and one game shy of another College World Series appearance. It was Georgia’s deepest run in the NCAA Tournament since 2008 and came in the first season under the direction of Ike Cousins head baseball coach Wes Johnson.

Earlier this week in Omaha, Condon was named Georgia’s first recipient of the Dick Howser Trophy. Also, Condon was selected as the Player of the Year by Baseball America and Perfect Game along with being named a First Team All-American by multiple organizations.

Condon is a finalist for the 2024 Golden Spikes Award (GSA). The 2024 GSA recipient will be announced June 22 on ESPN during the College World Series Finals.

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Greg is closing in on 15 years writing about and photographing UGA sports. While often wrong and/or out of focus, it has been a long, strange trip full of fun and new friends.