FAYETTEVILLE – Head coach Jeff Poppell announced that his 2010-11 is ranked No. 17 by CollegeSwimming.com.
Poppell and the Razorback swimming team had nine incoming student-athletes ranked.
"We are extremely excited about our incoming class," Poppell said. "To be recognized as one of the top recruiting classes in the country is truly an honor. Our goal is to continue climbing the national rankings year after year and we realize that this starts with recruiting."
This year’s recruiting class includes Katalin Bor, Elizabeth Braun, Aubrey Hetzler, Julia Kucherich, Nicole Menzel, Carly Mercer, Molly Milborn, Alexandria Sutton and Sigrun Sverrisdottir.
Sverrisdottir represented her home country of Iceland at the 2008 Summer Olympic Games, competing in the 200m freestyle. She also competed at the 2008 European Championships and is the Icelandic national record holder in three events. She was giving a 2.39 power index, followed by Bor with a 2.85 mark.
Bor is one of two Olympic athletes that will be joining the Razorbacks next season. A native of Budapest, Hungary, Bor competed at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing in the 200-meter breaststroke event.
Braun is an eight-time All-American out of Sprayberry High School in Marietta, Ga. As a junior, she won the Georgia High School 4A State Championship in the 200-yard freestyle and finished second in the 100y butterfly.
Hertzler took third place in the 200y individual medley and the 100y backstroke events at the Indiana 5A State Championships as a junior at Hamilton Southeastern High School in Noblesville, Ind. She was also a member of the 400y freestyle relay that broke the Indiana state record.
Kucherich is a native of York, Pennsylvania and one of the top 400 IM swimmers in the country. Kucherich was a U.S. National Junior Team Member in the 400m IM and a 2008 Olympic Trials Qualifier in both the 200m backstroke and 400m IM.
Menzel won both the 200y and 500y freestyle events at the South Carolina High School State Championships this year and is coming off a summer where she qualified for the U.S. Summer Nationals.
Mercer also attends Hamilton Southeastern High School and is a teammate of Hertlzer’s. A three-time All-American her junior year, she finished second in the 100y freestyle, 200y freestyle relay, and 400y freestyle relay events at the high school state championships. She was also a member of the 400y freestyle relay that broke the Indiana state record.
Milborn is the third signee to hail from Hamilton Southeastern High School. A scholastic All-American, Milborn excelled in the pool as well, finishing third in the 100y butterfly at sectionals her first two seasons followed by a second-place finish as a junior.
Sutton is an All-American from Cardinal Gibbons High School in Pompano Beach, Fla. As a senior, she finished fourth in the 50-yard freestyle and eighth in the 100y freestyle at the Florida 1A State Championships. Sutton earned first-team All-Miami-Broward honors and was named to the Sun Sentinel’s All-County swim team at season’s end.
The Razorbacks have shown steady improvement since Poppell took over as the head coach five seasons ago. In the team’s most recent season, Poppell guided the Razorbacks to a sixth place finish at the Southeastern Conference Championships. The Razorbacks scored 15th points and finished 34th at the NCAA Championships as well.
In addition to the success and improvement in the pool, Poppell has continued to foster a strong academic commitment as well. The Razorbacks had 15 swimmers and divers selected to the SEC Spring academic honor roll and the team ranked ninth for cumulative grade point average with seven student-athletes selected to the College Swimming Coaches Association of America All-Scholar team last week.
The top-ranked recruiting classes include Stanford, Arizona, Virginia, Auburn, Tennessee, California, USC, Florida, Texas and Ohio State in the top 10.