The name for Missy Franklin‘s first college swimming competition is fitting: Queen of the Pool.
Franklin is expected to compete in Cal’s season-opening meet hosted by Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, Calif., Cal Athletics said. In the meet, swimmers go against each other in a pentathlon — 100 yards for all four strokes plus a 100-yard individual medley.
NCAA competitions are done in yards, so it will be tough to measure Franklin’s NCAA times with her top times from major international meets.
But swimming fans who yearn to see how Franklin fares across all stroke disciplines should be appeased. Franklin has only done the backstroke and freestyle in World Championships and Olympics.
Her competition will be tough. Cal won the NCAA title in 2011 and 2012 and was runner-up to Georgia this past season. Olympic teammate Rachel Bootsma won Queen of the Pool last year in her first college meet.
On Saturday, Franklin and Bootsma could be part of co-ed relays. Remember that FINA approved mixed-gender relays in July, meaning they could be in place for the 2015 World Championships.
Here’s video of Cal’s female freshmen swimmers, including Franklin, serenading the men’s water polo team with the school’s fight song, an annual tradition:
Some traditions are worth keeping. Cal Women's Swim Team freshmen serenade the Men's Water Polo Team before we leave for first game of the season. GO BEARS!
If Serena Williams is to win a record-tying 24th Grand Slam singles title at the French Open, she may have to go through her older sister in the fourth round.
Williams, the sixth seed, could play Venus Williams in the round of 16 at Roland Garros, which begins Sunday.
Serena opens against countrywoman Kristie Ahn, whom she beat in the first round at the U.S. Open. Serena could then get her U.S. Open quarterfinal opponent, fellow mom Tsvetana Pironkova of Bulgaria, in the second round.
If Venus is to reach the fourth round, she must potentially get past U.S. Open runner-up Victoria Azarenka in the second round. Azarenka beat Serena in the U.S. Open semifinals, ending the American’s latest bid to tie Margaret Court‘s major titles record.
Venus lost in the French Open first round the last two years.
The French Open top seed is 2018 champion Simona Halep, who could play 2019 semifinalist Amanda Anisimova in the third round.
Coco Gauff, the rising 16-year-old American, gets 2019 semifinalist Jo Konta of Great Britain in the first round in the same quarter of the draw as Halep.
The field lacks defending champion Ash Barty of Australia, not traveling due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Also out: U.S. Open winner Naomi Osaka, citing a sore hamstring and tight turnaround from prevailing in New York two weeks ago.
Rafael Nadal was put into the same half of the French Open draw as fellow 2018 and 2019 finalist Dominic Thiem of Austria, with top-ranked Novak Djokovic catching a break.
Nadal, trying to tie Roger Federer‘s male record 20 Grand Slam singles titles, could play sixth-seeded German Alexander Zverev in the quarterfinals before a potential clash with Thiem, who just won the U.S. Open.
Djokovic, who is undefeated in 2020 save being defaulted out of the U.S. Open, could play No. 7 seed Matteo Berrettini of Italy in the quarterfinals before a possible semifinal with Russian Daniil Medvedev.
Medvedev is the fourth seed but is 0-3 at the French Open. Another possible Djokovic semifinal opponent is fifth seed Stefanos Tsitsipas of Greece, who reached the fourth round last year.
The most anticipated first-round matchup is between three-time major champion Andy Murray and 2015 French Open champion Stan Wawrinka. In Murray’s most recent French Open match, he lost in five sets to Wawrinka in the 2017 semifinals.