Buckeyes practice ahead of OSU invite this weekend at McCorkle Acquatic Pavilion. Credit: Sydney McNulty | Lantern reporter

The Ohio State men’s swimming team is set to host several non-conference opponents at McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion, one week before the Big Ten Championships.

However, this week is not about the opponents but it’s all about the team. More importantly, the Buckeyes trying to qualify for Big Ten’s next week.

“For the guys focused on invite, this is their last meet of the season so they are focused solely on this weekend,” sophomore Mossimo Chavez said. “For myself and all the guys that have already qualified for Big Ten’s, we are maybe swimming one or two events as a tune up but otherwise we are just resting.”

Despite the split focus of the team heading into the meet this weekend, one thing is clear and that is the Buckeyes are ready to race.

With a decrease of intensity in training, sophomore Austin Mortimer is hoping that he stamps his ticket to the championships with some fast swims this weekend, in particular the one mile freestyle.

“Right now everyone is starting to feel a lot better, mentally and physically,” said Mortimer. “But everyone is getting excited for their end of the season meets. For me personally the goal is to make the Big Ten team and go best times.”

There is no question that support from the seniors and the guys who have already made the Big Ten team, will be felt by the younger guys trying to qualify for one of the important meets of the season next week in Columbus.

“Our seniors are really good leaders, and as always they will lead by example,” said Chavez. “For the people tapering this meet, this is really where they focus on themselves but for the Big Ten people, we just go in there and cheer them.”

A little rest, along with great senior leadership for Ohio State has put the team in a great position to swim fast and with confidence, to have a successful remainder of the season.

The OSU Winter Invitational is set to start on Saturday morning and continue into Sunday afternoon.