Longhorns open season at the Southwest Collegiate Plunge

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This weekend the Longhorns launch their 2012-2013 season, charting a route toward the ultimate destination of an NCAA Championship.

The annual Southwest Collegiate Plunge will open the regular season for Texas, which was the Big 12 Champion and NCAA runner-up in 2011-12.

The two-day meet will feature contests in 17 events between Texas, Texas A&M, SMU and Incarnate Word. Twenty-nine letterwinners from last season’s nationally competitive team will represent the Longhorns at the event.

Of those returning members, three are seniors who have earned individual NCAA titles for UT. Dax Hill took the 200 freestyle at the NCAA championship last season; Austin Surhoff claimed the 200 individual medley for Texas as a freshman; Michael McBroom won the 1,650 freestyle as a junior after he transferred to UT from Minnesota.

“[McBroom] is an incredibly hard worker,” assistant coach Kris Kubik said. “It’s easy to say that about a lot of people, but for Michael if we have to do anything [in practice], we have to slow him down.”

Fans can also look for a strong showing during relay events, as Texas fielded competitive relay teams at last year’s NCAA Championship. In 2012 Surhoff and Hill teamed with returning sophomore Clay Youngquist and former Longhorn Jimmy Feigen to take first in the 400 freestyle relay.