Prep Swimming: East Rowan's Lowman to continue at Florida State
By Drew Sechler
When you first meet Tanner Lowman, you get the sense that when he was a child, he never had aspirations of swimming in college.
When he tells you the very same thing, the suspicions are confirmed.
Lowman, a recent East Rowan graduate, has signed to swim for the Seminoles of Florida State next year.
“They have an extremely strong program,” Lowman said. “I really liked it; the facilities are awesome and the campus is really nice.”
Lowman said he got to know his future teammates and watch practices on his visit to Florida State.
Lowman, who won MVP honors at the 3A state Swimming and Diving Championships, said he was surprised when he received the award.
“I wasn’t expecting to get MVP,” he said.
Lowman won the 100 breaststroke with a time of 56.75, three seconds faster than his preliminary mark, and also won the 200 individual medley with a time of 1:55.89, which was eight seconds faster than his preliminary time.
Pretty impressive for a guy who wasn’t expecting to win MVP.
Lowman said when he grew up, he was always on the fence about swimming and that some of his past coaches even tried to sway him away from the sport.
“I started and stopped about twelve times,” he said.
Lowman credits Rowan Aquatic Club coach Matt Hall with making him stick with the sport.
“If I wouldn’t have swam for Matt, I wouldn’t have (gone) anywhere,” Lowman said.
Lowman said Clemson, N.C. State, UNC-Wilmington and Florida State were among the schools vying for his swimming skills.
FSU started to recruit him around the time of spring break, but no one was really recruiting him heavily before that. People thought he was a junior in high school because he was still 17 years old at the time.
Lowman started with Hall and the RAC in 2007, and that got Lowman’s name out there.
“Training under Matt, he got me started, introduced me to the ACC and SEC schools,” Lowman said. “Matt was getting my name in the market.”
Hall said he did a lot of work to get Lowman’s name out in the college swimming world.
“It took me hustling around getting in contact with different schools,” Hall said. “We just marketed him as best as we could.”
Hall also said he was surprised with Lowman’s success as the year progressed.
“His goal was just to make it to high school states,” Hall said. “To be at a national level is a complete surprise.”
A pleasant surprise to many Mustangs and RAC fans.
“It took all the way through April for Tanner to reach his potential,” Hall said.
Hall said Lowman still has improving to do as he goes on to the next level.
Lowman plans on competing at the YMCA Nationals in College Park, Md., later this summer.
“I want to break the national record in the 100 or 200 breaststroke,” Lowman said.
Lowman calls his parents, Jamie and Audra, his biggest supporters.
Lowman, who remains on a rigorous practice schedule to keep his conditioning up to par, left for Tallahassee, Fla., on Monday to participate in orientation.
“I just take it one step at a time,” Lowman said. “It just comes so fast.”
Lowman should be used to that fast part.