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Fred Mitchell, a standout performer on both the freshman team and, this year, on the varsity, has been elected captain of next year's Harvard swimming team.
A native of Palo Alto, Calif., a city with a strong swimming tradition. Mitchell holds the school record in the 200-yd. freestyle, and at one time during the season held three Harvard freestyle marks.
At the Easterns at Yale he had an outstanding weekend, recording a fourth in the 500-yd. free, a fifth in the 200-yd. free, a seventh in the 1650-yd. free. He also swam strong legs on the Crimson 400-yd. and 800-yd. freestyle relay teams which took fifth and ninth respectively.
Although he has already established himself as one of the outstanding individual swimmers in Harvard history. Mitchell, for the most part a quiet person, has a lot to say about the relationship between the individual swimmer and the team.
Ideally, he views swimming as a balance between individual effort and team effort, with neither predominant. Discussing the Easterns at which Harvard broke 11 school records and finished fifth overall. Mitchell said, "I've never been on a team with as many great performances." But, he added, "our success at the Easterns was also a great team effort."
Although he does not plan to swim competitively this summer, Mitchell plans to be in the water at least once a day. He is hoping to get a summer job as a swim coach in the Philippines, a plan consistent with what Mitchell says is his new attitude toward swimming: "I have a different outlook now, more recreation than hard work and devotion," Mitchell said.
Mitchell looks forward to next year's season "I'll be interested to see who actually comes from the really great freshman class admitted."
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