Sophomore John Ferrell and the Cougars will travel to over 7,000 feet to meet Air Force and Wyoming this weekend, while the divers compete at the AFA Diving Invitational. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)
PROVO -- The men's and women's swimming and diving teams will travel to Air Force Thursday to take on the Falcons at 7,200 feet in the Cadet Natatorium at 5 p.m. before the swimmers climb to Laramie for a Saturday meet at noon against the Cowboys at Wyoming. The divers will stay at Air Force to meet seven other teams for the AFA Diving Invitational through Saturday.
The No. 20 BYU men's swimming team was beat by Air Force at the Speedo Cup Invitational in mid-Nov. at UC Irvine. BYU came in third behind the Falcons in second place. But men's swimming coach Tim Powers said the Cougars have been training hard and they are ready for the challenge.
"Air Force has some outstanding swimmers and we expect it to be a tough meet," Powers said. "But our guys have been training hard and I like the way we're looking."
The women also met Air Force at the Speedo Cup but defeated them by 123 points.
"We handled Air Force at the Speedo Cup, but they will test us," said women's swimming coach Stan Crump.
Powers and Crump both agreed meeting Wyoming on Saturday would be exhausting for both teams, but manageable.
"It's just a tiring trip because we're in the cycle part of our season," said Crump. "We're in the middle of pounding them for conference."
The BYU diving team will compete at Air Force Friday at noon and Saturday at 9 a.m. against MWC opponents Air Force, Colorado State, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming, in addition to Colorado College and Denver.
Diving coach Keith Russell said his team is making definite improvement, but the invitational will bring new challenges because it will be the Cougars first meeting with Air Force and Wyoming this season.
"Wyoming will be really tough but I expect all of us to be in the game all the way," Russell said. "I expect to win."
This will be the Cougars' final road trip before the MWC Championships Feb. 22-25. BYU will meet Utah at home Feb. 2 and the Stanford divers Feb. 10.