Diving sets the stage this weekend for three eventful weeks of U.S. Olympic Trials. Berths on the diving team headed to Rio will be awarded next week, and the squad will be known in full June 26.
Preliminary rounds take place each day in Indianapolis from Saturday through Tuesday, followed by finals June 22-26. Much of the action will be aired live on NBC, NBCSN and streamed on NBC Sports Live Extra.
U.S. divers qualified for Olympic berths in seven of eight events. They failed to secure a spot in the women’s synchronized springboard event, but will compete in men’s synchronized springboard and platform, men’s individual springboard and platform, women’s synchronized platform, and women’s individual springboard and platform.
Here are five men’s divers to watch at trials. Click here for the women.
The defending Olympic gold medalist in the men’s platform, Boudia is all but a lock to make the U.S. team. He won the platform event at both the 2008 and 2012 trials and remains a strong medal contender internationally; Boudia took silver at the past three World Championships. He also won bronze in London’s synchronized platform event with the since-retired Nick McCrory, but now dives with Steele Johnson. Boudia resides in West Lafayette, Ind., which is home to his alma mater, Purdue, and just an hour’s drive from Indianapolis.
Boudia and the 20-year-old Johnson have known each other since Boudia drove Johnson to practice years ago in the Indianapolis suburbs, and Johnson followed in Boudia’s footsteps by enrolling at Purdue. They now train together and are each other’s main domestic competition. Johnson captured the 2015 NCAA championship in men’s platform, and also won the event at the past three Winter Nationals (though Boudia was absent). The U.S. holds two Olympic berths in the event, so Boudia and Johnson are favored to secure them. Johnson is also a good bet in the synchronized platform event, with Boudia.
A veteran of four Olympics, the 36-year-old Dumais is looking to become the first diver to make five U.S. Olympic teams. He’s a long shot in the individual springboard event (he placed fourth at Winter Nationals), but a strong contender in synchronized springboard, the event in which he won 2012 Olympic bronze with Kristian Ipsen. Dumais and Ipsen placed second at the 2015 Summer and Winter Nationals.
Ipsen is the reigning national champ in men’s springboard and a favorite to capture one of two U.S. berths in the event. He’d be an outside medal contender in Rio, where he secured a bronze medal at the World Cup stop in February. The U.S. hasn’t won an Olympic springboard medal since 1996. In synchronized springboard, Ipsen placed second with Dumais at the two major national events last year, but also won both events with another partner, Sam Dorman. Divers can compete with multiple partners at some events, but Ipsen will not at trials. Ipsen and Dumais are paired together again, eyeing a return to the podium in Rio.
A dark horse in the men’s platform is Dinsmore, who won the event at last year’s Summer Nationals. Neither Boudia nor Johnson competed, however. With Johnson in the field at Winter Nationals, Dinsmore took third. The 19-year-old Miami student did, however, top Johnson at the World Cup event in Rio this past February. He edged out Johnson for bronze, and likely will need a similar performance to earn an Olympic berth.