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Matt Biondi Hawaii
MATT BIONDI

Matt Biondi is recognized as one of the fastest human beings in the water and, with eleven Olympic medals, is tied with Mark Spitz as the most decorated US Olympian in history. His competitive career, which spanned three Olympiads, garnered him not only his eleven medals, but countless world and U.S. records.

Matt started his aquatics career as a swimmer and water polo player in his hometown of Moraga, California. As he moved into his teens, his incredible abilities as a swimmer -- specifically as a sprinter -- began to emerge. Though he did not start swimming year-round until he started at Campolindo High School, by his senior year Biondi was the top schoolboy sprinter in America with a National High School record in the 50-yard freestyle (20.40). He accepted a scholarship to the University of California, Berkeley to swim and play water polo, and enrolled in 1983. In his freshman year he played on Berkeley's NCAA Championship water polo team and made the consolation finals at the 1984 NCAA Swimming Championships.

That summer, Biondi surprised the swimming community by qualifying for a spot on the U.S. 4x100 meter freestyle relay at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics. The team won the gold medal in a world record time. Returning to Berkeley, Biondi once again played on an NCAA Champion water polo team in the fall and in the winter of 1985 won the first of his 13 individual swimming titles. He would be named NCAA "Swimmer of the Year" in 1985, 1986 and 1987, and would set several American and NCAA records.

Biondi set the first of his twelve individual swimming world records in 1985. He was the first man to swim the 100-meter freestyle faster than 49 seconds, and by 1988 he owned the ten fastest times swum in that event. He won a total 24 U.S. Championships in the 50, 100 and 200-meter freestyle events, as well as the 100-butterfly. In two World Championships (1986 and 1991), Biondi won 11 medals including six gold. During his career, he was a Sullivan Award Finalist, the UPI "Sportsman of the Year," the USOC "Sportsman of the Year" and twice the Swimming World magazine "Male Swimmer of the World" (1986 and 1988). He is a member of the United States Olympic Hall of Fame and the International Swimming Hall of Fame.

Matt received his B.A. from UC Berkeley in 1988 and his M.A.T. from Lewis & Clark in 2000. He currently teaches high school math, U.S. history and personal excellence as well as coaches the swim team.


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