U-M's Connor Jaeger sixth in 1,500 free; EMU's Eric Alejandro doesn't advance in 400 hurdles
University of Michigan junior Connor Jaeger, making his first Olympic appearance, finished sixth in the final of the 1,500-meter freestyle Saturday.
Jaeger, who has only been training for the long-distance event for two years, finished in 14:52.99, less than a second off his personal-best time (14:52.51) set at the U.S. Olympic trials.
Ryan Cochrane of Canada (14:39.63) and Oussama Mellouli of Tunisia (14:40.31) won silver and bronze medals, respectively.
As a freshman at Michigan in 2010-11, Jaeger focused on the 200 and 500-yard freestyle events. His third event was the 200 butterfly.
“After that first collegiate season, my coach (Mike Bottom) and I thought it was a smart idea to train for the 1,650 instead, the collegiate version of this event,” Jaeger told USA Swimming after his semifinal race. “So since then I've been playing catch-up in training."
The 21-year-old caught up quickly, finishing third in the mile at the NCAA Championships last March in 14:35.14, the fifth-fastest time in U-M history.
Alejandro falls short in 400 hurdles
A personal-best time wasn’t enough to advance former Eastern Michigan track and field athlete Eric Alejandro into the 400-meter hurdles final.
Alejandro, representing Puerto Rico, finished seventh in his semifinal heat with a time of 49.15 seconds.
Eastern Michigan’s other Olympian, United States high jumper Jamie Nieto, competes in preliminary rounds on Sunday.
According to EMUEagles.com, Eastern Michigan has had a track representative at every Summer Games since 1960.