2008 NCAA BACKSTROKE CHAMPION (100M)  •  2008 BIG TEN CO-SWIMMER OF THE YEAR  •  NCAA FIRST TEAM ALL-AMERICAN (2007-2008)  •  THREE-TIME INDIANA STATE HIGH SCHOOL CHAMPION (100M)
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Ben Hesen

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Personal Quotes
I never saw a pessimistic general win a battle.
Personal Info

Born On:  February 15, 1986
Hometown:  Jeffersonville, Indiana
Resides:  Jeffersonville, Indiana
Education:  Indiana University
Height:  6' 2

Biography

Journey to the Nation’s Center Stage

A small town guy from right on the border of Indiana and Kentucky, Ben Hesen proved that he was much more than a little fish in a big pond. Swimming started at an early age for Ben, who began taking lessons at the age of five. Quickly escalating into a full-time commitment, Ben was passionate about swimming, but never saw much opportunity in it until a meteoric rise between his freshman and sophomore year at Jeffersonville High School in Indiana.

On swimming’s biggest stage Ben shined the brightest, winning the 100m backstroke at the 2008 NCAA Championships. Leading the race from beginning to end, Ben posted the second fastest time in NCAA history while winning the first national title in swimming for Indiana University in 25 years. The victory came over three-time NCAA Champion Albert Subirats of Arizona University who came in second.

Ben remembers attending NCAA Championships in high school and thinking he would never reach that level. From the day he stepped foot on Indiana University’s campus he began to prove himself wrong.

The once storied program that produced the likes of Olympic greats Mark Spitz and Gary Hall Sr. was looking for a resurgence under coaches Ray Looze and Donny Brusch and found their catalyst in Ben. Swimming the backstroke, fly and medley Ben helped lead the Hoosiers to a Big Ten title in his sophomore year. It was the schools first in four years, an unprecedented absence for the university. A team captain as a senior, Ben was named the 2008 Co-Big Ten Swimmer of the Year while winning conference titles in the 100m fly and backstroke.

A local hero for his accomplishments in and out of the pool, Ben remains humble. His coach recalls him coming up to him a few day after his national championship win and asking if his victory helped Hoosier swimming. Looze had to fight back a smile knowing what this local product had done for the schools history-rich program.

Ben continues his journey in swimming as he competes across the country and pursues a place on Team USA at the London 2012 Olympic Games.