Q&A with Bryan Stahl
Fourth-year Bryan Stahl and the Virginia men’s swimming team will look to do what women’s team just accomplished win the Atlantic Coast Conference championship. It’s the Cavalier men’s turn this week as the squad heads to Atlanta for the league meet, which begins Wednesday at the Aquatic Center on the Georgia Tech campus. All event finals will be broadcast on ACC Select online at www.accselect.com.
Question: Are you ready for ACCs?
Stahl: It is kind of like the last dance for all of the fourth-years. College swimmers usually don’t get to the professional ranks so for a lot of us, this is our last opportunity to get up and compete. Like we say, “last one fast one,” and it should be a good time.
Question: What do you do to get pumped up for the biggest meet of the year?
Stahl: I really don’t think we don’t need to get psyched up too much more. Just being there, in that environment, being around the team, it is pretty intense. I don’t even do anything to get myself pumped up; I know it is going to be there come race time.
Question: Does having the women win the ACC championship motivate the guys?
Stahl: I am sure there is a little bit of friendly competition. Since we train together, it definitely motivates us a little bit knowing that they swam so well. We feel like we are going to swim well too. I think it gives us a mental edge.
Question: What are the expectations for 2008 after a second-place finish last year?
Stahl: Losing last year was a pretty big disappointment for the entire team. It definitely motivated us a lot more this year. We have nothing to lose and everything to gain. It motivated us especially throughout the summer last year, when we had the loss on our minds. It’s definitely something we’ve been looking forward to for an entire year.
Question: What’s your favorite Virginia swimming memory?
Stahl: Definitely winning eight straight (ACC titles) in my second year. No one thought we could win. We were the underdogs going into the meet, so winning was a really great feeling.
Question: Do you still keep in touch with some Virginia swimming alumni?
Stahl: Oh yeah, absolutely. I even keep in touch with the guys who were seniors when I was a first-year. They’re always down for events or whatnot. I’m very close to the guys I raced with during my second year. I imagine I’ll even keep in touch with this year’s first-years.
Question: What do you do for fun?
Stahl: Play golf and water polo. I also like Frisbee golf and I’m really into live music.
Question: What are your plans after graduation?
Stahl: I’m actually not graduating until 2009, but I’d like to get into either consulting or investment banking.
Question: What’s the most embarrassing song on your iPod?
Stahl: Mariah Carey’s “Always be my Baby.”