The U.S. women will bring a very young team to compete in London against the rest of the world. Fans should still have high expectations for the women's swim team though.
Sports Illustrated projects the U.S. women to win seven gold medals, four silver, and two bronze medals. A total of 13 medals would be a slight disappointment for the U.S. women. The women's team is significantly younger than the men's and is likely to pull off a surprise race or two throughout the competition.
Missy Franklin is projected to win just two individual medals, gold in the 200 backstroke and silver in the 100 meter backstroke. I wouldn't be surprised if she's able to sneak in and threaten to medal in the 100 and 200 meter freestyle races. Franklin is likely to leave the Olympics as one of the most successful female Olympians in London. It's tough to expect much at just 17 years old, but Franklin is fully capable of it. I'm excited to see what she's able to accomplish in London.
The big medal winner on the women's side is projected to be American Rebecca Soni. Soni is expected to win both the 100 and 200 meter breaststroke races. Soni and her U.S. teammates are favored to win gold in the 400 medley relay as well.
Allison Schmidt is projected to win gold in the 200 freestyle, Elizabeth Beisel is projected for gold in the 400 meter IM, and Dana Vollmer predicted to win a gold in the 100 meter butterfly.
Fans shouldn't read too much into the projections though. Many of the expected results show very few upsets and appear to be strictly going off of the Olympic trial results. I still think the U.S. women will fare well in London and should see big success in many races. The future looks bright for the women's team with so many younger athletes ready to breakout and stake their claim in London. Fans everywhere should be very excited about the future of the sport on the women's side.
Kyle Rapoza is a Featured Contributor for the Yahoo! Contributor Network and grew up both competing and coaching in the sport of swimming.