A 12-time All-American 2010 and 2011 Big Ten champion in the 50 and 100 freestyle events school record holder in the 50 freestyle (19.05) and 200 free relay holds the third-best time in the 100 free (42.93) 2006 U.S. Junior National champion in the 50-meter free 2008 Olympic Trials qualifier shattered the school varsity long course record in the 50-meter free at the 2008 U.S. Open at University Aquatic Center with a time of 22.39 in the finals posted a time of 22.46 in the prelims ended up with a third place finish, narrowly missing a berth on the USA World University Games team.
2010-11 SENIOR SEASON:
Big Ten Champion in the 50 free, 100 free, and 200 free relay the first swimmer since Minnesota's Steve Jackman in 1962 and 1963 to repeat in both sprint free events shattered the Big Ten record in the 50 free with a time of 19.10 in the prelims, and then broke that record swimming a 19.05 split for the Gophers' meet record-setting 200 free relay (1:16.78) won the 50 free final with a time of 19.19 won the 100 free with a time of 43.20 swam a career best 42.93 in the first leg of the runner-up 400 free relay earned his second individual All-America honor, finishing ninth in the 50 free in 19.39 an All-American in the 200 free relay for the fourth straight year also part of the All-American 400 free and 200 medley relays undefeated in the 50 free in dual meets this season won the 100 free against Hawaii and Missouri also won the 100 free at the Minnesota Challenge finished fourth in the 100 free at the Georgia Invitational finished fifth in the 50 free and seventh in the 100 free at the Minnesota Grand Prix letterwinner.
2009-10 JUNIOR SEASON:
Big Ten champion in the 50 free and 100 free becoming the first Gopher since Terry Silkaitis in 2003 to sweep the events and just the third Gopher ever first Gopher since 2003 to win multiple individual events at the Big Ten Championships broke the school record in the 50 free in the prelims with a time of 19.41 won the finals with a time of 19.53 won the 100 free with a time of 43.29 swam leg of Big Ten runner-up 400 free relay and 200 free relay earned first individual All-America honor with a 10th-place finish in the 50 free at the NCAA Championships earned first team All-America honors on the 400 free relay that placed seventh in 2:54.12 also earned All-America honors on the ninth-place 200 free relay also placed 24th in the 100 free at the NCAA Championships posted four individual event wins during the regular season posted huge win in the 50 freestyle at the Ohio State Invitational won the 50 free at Iowa in dual meet action finaled in the 50 free (sixth) and won the consolation final of the 100 free at the Minnesota Grand Prix was the runner-up in the 50 free at the Big Ten Triple Duals with Wisconsin and Purdue won the 50 free and placed second at Missouri won the 100 free at the Minnesota Challenge and placed second in the 50 free letterwinner.
2008-09 SOPHOMORE SEASON: Picked up three All-America awards swam second leg of 200 free relay that finished seventh after breaking the school record with a time of 1:17.10 in the preliminaries also earned first team All-America honors on the 400 free relay that placed eighth swam the anchor leg of the 200 medley relay that won the consolation final to finish ninth at NCAAs also finished 43rd overall in the 50 free in 19.94 competed at second NCAA Championships scored twice at the Big Ten Championships won the consolation final of the 100 freestyle in career-best 43.45 also placed 11th in the free swam on the Gopher Big Ten runner-up 400 freestyle relay team and third place 200 free relay team won four events during the regular season led Minnesota's 1-2-3-4 finish in the 50 free at North Carolina took the 50 free against Iowa placed third in the 50 free and fourth in the 100 free at the Ohio State Invitational won the 50 free at Washington took the title in the 50 free at the Minnesota Challenge.
2007-08 FRESHMAN SEASON: Had a breakthrough performance at first Big Ten Championships clocked three consecutive sub-20 second 50 freestyles finished third in the 50 free in 19.83 after clocking a 19.72 in the prelims the 19.72 was the second-best time ever at Minnesota and set a new freshman record led off the 200 free relay in 19.82 team placed third in 1:18.55 posted a lifetime-best 44.19 to reach the consolation final of the 100 free where he ended up 12th also finished 33rd in the 200 free in 1:39.70 earned first All-America honor on the 200 freestyle relay that placed seventh in 1:18.19 Richards clocked an anchor leg of 19.23 also anchored the 200 medley relay at the NCAA Championships in 19.30 to help Minnesota finish ninth posted a 19.76 in the prelims of the 50 free to finish 25th also clocked a career-best 44.17 to finish 39th in the 100 free at NCAAs captured first career win at Iowa, taking the 50 free in 21.40 (10/19) clocked a 20.70 to take second in the 50 free against Arizona State (1/19) letterwinner.
A 2007 graduate of Roseville Area High School burst on the national scene in 2006, winning the Junior National title in the 50-meter freestyle held the second-fastest high school time in the nation in the 50-yard freestyle at 20.51 after winning the 2006 Minnesota State Class AA title in the event crushed the all-time Minnesota state record in the 50 free en route to defending the state crown with a time of 20.22 broke the record set by Gopher teammate Colin Lee-To of 20.42 also took second in the 100 free in 45.54 finished third in the 100 freestyle at the 2006 Minnesota State meet was the runner-up in the 50 free and took third at the state meet as a sophomore in 2005 has already achieved an Olympic Trials cut in the 50 free, making him the only high school swimmer in the country with the qualifying time also competed for the Star Swim Club under head coach Paul Lundsten.
PERSONAL: Majoring in biology, science and environment son of Tom Richards and Diane Cushman born July 14, 1989.
Richards's Top Times:
50 free 19.05 2/25/11
100 free 42.93 2/26/11
Gophers Receive CSCAA Scholar All-America Recognition
Both the men's and women's teams earned academic distinction from the coaches association.
Former swim coach Eckelkamp Passes Away
Gopher Athletics is saddened to learn that former assistant men's swimming and diving coach Steve Eckelkamp has passed away at his home on June 10, in Mount Juliet, Tenn.
LeBlang Takes Learned Leadership to Next Season
Junior diver Alan LeBlang discusses his leadership role for the upcoming season with GopherSports.com.