When you’re a top-flight swimmer and at the top of your class academically, you have no shortage of college options.
So many, in fact, that making a choice can be tougher than any swim practice or physics exam.
Indian Creek High School valedictorian Wyeth Brock found that out when, after having a plan in place for more than a year, an unexpected opportunity knocked.
Consequently, what seemed an easy decision became not-so-easy: swim for a small school in Ohio, or for a Big Ten school in Indiana?
After much soul-searching, he chose the Big Ten school in Indiana, which happens to be Indiana University.
“I was really torn. I didn’t know what I wanted to do,” said Brock, who was looking for the best possible place to pursue his lofty athletics and academics goals.
A two-time IHSAA Boys Swimming and Diving State Finals qualifier in the 100 butterfly and 100 backstroke, Brock initially had planned on attending either Kenyon College or Dennison University. Both are NCAA Division III schools in Ohio that were ranked Nos. 1 and 2, respectively, in men’s swimming this past season.
Equally important, both offer nationally respected paths to pre-med and pre-dental programs, which Brock wants to pursue.
Then again, so does IU — an NCAA Division I swimming power globally renowned for its medical and dental programs.
Brock had been eyeing Kenyon and Dennison since his junior season and was poised to pick one or other when fate intervened — quite late in the process.
“After our last club swim meet, I got a call from the coach at IU, and I went down there for a visit,” Brock said. “I just kind of decided that’s what I wanted to do.”
“It’s a really great opportunity. I’ll probably become the best swimmer I can be.”
And he’ll be able to major in biology in advance of a pre-med or pre-dental pursuit. He doesn’t know which yet, but does plan on a medical profession after college.
His mother, Dana Brock, is an anesthesiologist. His interest in medicine stems largely from her occupation.
“I actually went to work with her one time just to observe and saw a couple of different surgeries,” Brock said. “It was really interesting.”
“I really don’t know what I want to do yet. Those are just the two options I’m considering the most.”
Brock has made straight As since first grade.
He has never had anything less.
“I always want to keep my grades up. I just never really settled for anything less than an A,” Brock said. “If see a B, that’s not good.”
Brock has never seen a B on a report card, despite not being particularly fond of English or literature or arts classes. Math and science are his top subjects. His GPA is 4.622, the product of still excelling in classes that aren’t his strengths.
“I’m way more math-science. I think that’s what I’m geared for,” Brock said. “I’m more interested in learning about how things work and solving problems, rather than reading a book or literature.”
“There’s a set way to do it. You can follow steps.”
By going to IU, Brock is following in the steps of his older brother, Levi, who is a sophomore on the Hoosiers’ men’s swimming team.
Brock, like his big brother, will join the team as a walk-on.
Because the offer to do so came late in the process, Brock doesn’t have any academics or athletics scholarship help at the moment. But he has applied for several and anticipates receiving some in the near future.
Either way, he is ready for the next step in his athletics and academics careers.
“I’m really looking forward to it just because of the whole routine. I’ll like it a lot better than just going class to class to class in high school,” Brock said. “There will be some breaks. You’re kind of on your own, and I’ll be with the swim team a lot. They have a huge team, so I’ll have a lot of friends and am always going to have something to do.”
Name: Wyeth Brock
Parents: Eric and Dana Brock
College: Indiana University
Major: Biology, with a focus on pre-med or pre-dental
Career goal: Work in the medical field, either as a physician or dentist