The London Olympics recently completed in the pool and the U.S. swimming team saw many new stars emerge. After dominating the competition, these five athletes have made a name for themselves based on their performances in London.
The London Olympics will close with Franklin having established herself as one of the stars of these Olympic Games. Franklin leaves with four gold medals, one bronze medal, and two world records. She won both individual backstroke races and was a part of two gold medal winning relays. At just 17 years old, the world saw just the beginning of Missy Franklin's dominance in the pool.
Adrian was not well known outside of hardcore swimming fans prior to London. That all changed after his performances in both the individual 100 freestyle and the men's medley relay. Adrian is just 23 years old and could still be in for another run in 2016 and beyond.
Schmidt competed in 2008 and won a bronze medal in a relay race. She leaves 2012 with five Olympic medals including three gold. In addition to the medals, Schmitt was a part of a world record breaking medley relay team. She also broke Olympic records in the 200 freestyle and as a part of the 800 meter freestyle relay. Schmitt is still just 22 years old and could perform even better in the future for USA swimming.
Grevers has taken the title of the best backstroker in the world. The U.S. has seen dominance in the 100 backstroke for a long time and Grevers continued that tradition. He'll leave London with two gold and one silver medal. Matt Grevers is also a threat in both the sprint freestyle races moving forward. His relay split in the 400 free relay qualifier was a very good time and could have made a strong case for him to be on the final relay team.
Ledecky came from nowhere to win the women's 800 meter freestyle at just 15 years old. Still not old enough to drive, Ledecky put her name on the map by winning the distance freestyle race and bringing home a gold. She may be looked on to carry the once proud U.S. tradition of distance freestylers that used to be led by the great Janet Evans.
Kyle Rapoza is a Featured Contributor for the Yahoo! Contributor Network and grew up both competing and coaching in the sport of swimming.
London Olympic swimming results