BYU swimmer Jake Taylor aims for Olympics

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BYU swimmer Jake Taylor broke two BYU records in one meet in December of 2014.

Taylor, a junior from Nevada, is a co-captain of the swim team and competes in the individual medley, freestyle and back stroke.  He first started competing in swim when he was just 8 years old and only took a break from it while on his mission in El Salvador.

Both broken records came at the Texas Invitational. Taylor broke the first record for the 100-yard backstroke. He finished with a time of 45.95 seconds — the fastest the nation had seen that season. He then set a new record for the 200-yard backstroke with a time of 1:40.51.

“I was super stoked when I got it because I beat my personal best time by a couple of seconds,” Taylor said. “I push myself physically and work hard on my technique every day in order to improve my times. I think that focusing so much on my technique is what gives me an advantage over my competitors.”

Taylor was named the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Male Athlete of the Week for the third time this season after his performance. No other athlete has received this award three times in one season.

“We had an amazing meet. It was one of the best we’ve had in many years,” Head Coach John Brooks said following the invitational. “Jake Taylor breaking the records is awesome.”

Taylor’s biggest motivation this season has been to qualify for the NCAA Championships, which will take place in  March. His 200-yard backstroke time was fast enough that he automatically qualified.

“I wanted to make it into the top eight during the championships,” Taylor said. “Breaking the records was really just a bonus.”

The ultimate goal Taylor has for the future is to make it onto the United States Olympic team. “That is the dream of anyone who is competing in swim and dive at the collegiate level,” Taylor said. He plans to attend tryouts the summer after he graduates.

Taylor continues to swim well this semester. In the meet against Arizona State on Jan. 10, Taylor came in first in the men’s 200-yard backstroke.

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