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The student news source of the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

The Racquet Press

The student news source of the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

The Racquet Press

UWL Coach Jack Englehardt Qualifies for 2024 Olympic Trials

Jack Englehardt (left) and Shane Ryan (right). (Photo provided by Jack Englehardt.)

Jack Englehardt is not just an Assistant Coach for the University of Wisconsin La Crosse Men’s & Women’s Swim and Dive team; he is also an Olympic-caliber swimmer.

Englehardt recently competed at the Speedo Sectional Meet in Iowa City in early March in the Men’s 50-meter freestyle. Englehardt won the 50m free and finished with a lifetime personal best time of 22.44 seconds. According to, Englehardt’s time sets him ranked twelfth this season in the 50m free.

Englehardt’s achievement of setting a new personal best time has earned him qualification for the Team USA Olympic Trials in Indianapolis in June, surpassing the qualification standard by 0.35 seconds. This accomplishment presents Englehardt with the opportunity to vie for a spot on Team USA and potentially represent the nation at the 2024 Paris Olympics.

The 29-year-old has been swimming for two decades and is one of the best swimmers in Wisconsin. Englehardt is a graduate of Madison West High School and returned in 2018 after his collegiate swimming career at UW-Stevens Point where he holds the school record time for the 50-yard freestyle of 19.77s. Englehardt served as the assistant men’s coach and was promoted to head the program only a year later.

Qualifying for Team USA Olympic Trials is not an easy feat, but Englehardt isn’t a stranger to Team USA. Englehardt has now qualified twice in his career, with the first qualification coming in 2021. “Many swimmers work their entire life to qualify for Olympic Trials, which most never achieve,” said Madison Aquatics Program Director and longtime coach of Englehart, Shane Ryan. “Jack has now done it twice in a row, which is amazing because it’s only once every four years, especially [qualifying again] later in his career.”

Ryan believes that Englehardt’s success comes from many of the intangible qualities he has been gifted with, one of which is Englehardt’s ability to learn and improve from disappointing results. “Jack is a true student turned teacher. He is always trying to learn how to improve himself, and help others be the best they can be.”

After college, Englehardt felt little motivation to continue training, but said he “jumped back in the pool during the pandemic and hasn’t looked back since.” To prepare for the Olympic Trials, Englehardt splits his training between the pool and the weight room.

Ben Collins is a first-year student who also competed under Englehardt at Madison West. Collins believes Englehardt’s success has rubbed off on the athletes on the UWL swimming and diving team, and that Englehardt’s success story is a motivational tool. “He sets a great example, that if you put your mind to something you can still do it,” said Collins.

Englehardt is a decorated swimmer, and qualifying for the Team USA Olympic Trials isn’t the only label under experience on Englehardt’s resume. During his tenure at UW-Stevens Point, Englehardt was a three-time National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III qualifier and earned 11 All-America honors. Englehardt also holds 15 Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) titles, with three coming in the 50m free and eight coming from relay races. Englehardt holds the WIAC record for the 50m free, which he set at the WIAC Conference Championships in 2018 with a time of 19.77s. Englehardt graduated from UW-Stevens Point in 2018 with a bachelor’s degree in biology and obtained his master’s from Ohio University in 2023.

The Team USA Swimming Olympic Trials will be held from June 15 – 23, 2024 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Indiana. For more information about Team USA Swimming Olympic Trials, visit the Team USA Swimming website.

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About the Contributor
John Gaynor
John Gaynor, Sports Reporter
Year at UWL: Freshman
PGPs: He/Him
Hometown: Menomonee Falls, Wisconsin
Major: Marketing
Minor: N/A
Other Campus Involvement: Running Club, Track & Field Team
Future Plans after Graduation: Work in the aviation industry
Favorite Activity in La Crosse: Walking near the river
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