No matter if he is exhausted in the pool, senior swimmer and co-captain Gus Everson is willing to give his all for the team. All of this in hopes of setting a good example for his teammates on the Eastern Michigan University men’s swimming team with the goal of another Mid-American Conference championship banner hanging from the ceiling of Jones Natatorium.
During the preseason, and before the team can lunge off the starting blocks at Northwestern University, on Oct. 18, to start the 2013-14 season, the men’s team got together and voted Everson and Sophomore Dexter Foos team captains. Everson said he was honored to have such a title on the team.
“It’s pretty cool that the guys respect me that much to give me that responsibility,” Everson said.
Everson, a native of Sandusky, Ohio, said he took up swimming in either the seventh or eighth grade from his sister, Lily, since he wasn’t coordinated enough to play basketball.
He attended Sandusky High School where he was a four-year letter-winner in the pool. In his high school career, Everson claimed All-State honors twice, was named All-American in the 100 freestyle event as a senior and won a district championship in the 50-freestyle. He remembered the sport was not taken too seriously in high school but said his coach helped turn around the team
“[Swimming] was just a high school sport everyone played,” Everson said. “But we made it to states in my junior and senior year.”
Eastern Michigan University came calling when it was time for Everson to pick colleges. He also had
The Ohio State University and Georgia Institute of Technology to choose from. EMU was his school of choice to continue his swimming career, and he is working on a major in actuarial science, math and economics. This is the decision he hasn’t had second thoughts about.
“It’s been quite a journey to give the team all you can,” Everson said.
In his freshman year, Everson was part of a relay team that won in the 200-yard freestyle relay. At the MAC championship that year, he finished 11th in the 100-yard freestyle. His sophomore campaign saw him reach the top five on four occasions, in his events, and claimed 13th in the conference championship in the 50-yard freestyle event.
His junior year saw many accomplishments for himself and the team. Everson was named Academic
All-MAC along with five other swimmers on the men’s team.
At the MAC title meet, he was the anchor to the 200-yard freestyle relay team that finished third. Everson got seventh in the 100-yard freestyle and eighth in the 50-yard freestyle. At the EMU Invitational, his 200-Freestyle Relay team grabbed victory while Eastern Michigan took second behind Oakland University. At the FIU Invitational, his 200-free relay squad got second as Everson also claimed second place in the 50-yard freestyle event.
With the nomination of team captain for the upcoming season, it is a title Everson is prepared to take very seriously.
“You can tell someone to do anything, but you got to do it yourself,” Everson said. “Otherwise the guys won’t do it.”
Much like his teammates on the men’s roster, Everson is has a lot of confidence in his squad it will do well this season and put up a conference championship banner in the rafters of Jones Natatorium for the 32nd time in school history. But he knows it won’t come easy.
“If we work as hard as we can, we can win that championship,” Everson said.