Will Thomas

(1-20-22) Will Thomas is a 2017 graduate of Westlake High School in Austin, Texas. He committed to swim at Ivy League member Penn after his high school career. He also swam for Lost Creek Aquatics and specializes in distance freestyle. His older brother, Wes, in 2016 as a senior at Penn, was 8th in the 200 breast, 11th in the 100 breast, and 14th in the 1000 free at the 2016 Ivy League Men’s Championships. The two brothers just missed overlapping at Penn.

His senior season at Westlake…Will Thomas took fourth in the 500 free at the 2016 6A Texas State Meet. He scored a personal best in the event in prelims, touching in 4:24.48. His top 200 free time (1:40.56) comes from College Station Sectionals last February. Thomas competed in the 200/400/1500m freestyles at 2016 Speedo Summer Juniors. His best SCY times are:

  • 200 free – 1:40.56
  • 500 free – 4:24.48
  • 1000 free – 9:42.81
  • 1650 free – 15:58.99

Thomas would have scored in the2016 Ivy League B final of the 500 free and the C final of the 200 free.

His career on the Penn men’s team –

2019-20: Competed in four of Penn’s eight regular season events … Won the 500 free against Villanova (Nov. 15).

2018-19: Second-team All-Ivy in the 500 free, 1,000 free, and 1,650 free after reaching the ‘A’ final of the Ivy League Championships and finishing second overall in each of the events.
2017-18: Ivy League Championships qualifier in 500 free (A final), 1000 free (A final), 1650 free (A final).
200 Free … 1:39.31
500 Free … 4:18.72
1,000 Free … 8:55.75
1,650 Free … 14:54.76
200 IM … 1:56.51
400 IM … 4:32.55

Lia Thomas

This is Will Thomas today at Penn …as transgender senior swimmer Lia Thomas.

At the 2021 Zippy Invitational –

Lia Thomas set a new pool and meet record in the 500 free. In the finals she swam more than 12 seconds faster, finishing in first place with a time of 4:34.06. That time is currently the best in the country in the event. Her mark was also a new program record.

Lia Thomas won a pair of events on Senior Day, finishing first in both the 200 free (1:48.73) and the 500 free (4:57.20).

2020-21: All 2020-21 Ivy League winter sports were canceled on November 12 due to a nationwide outbreak of coronavirus COVID-19.

Yesterday the NCAA issued the following statement on transgender athletes, the issue came to light because of Will/Lia Thomas this season.

The NCAA Board of Governors on Wednesday voted in support of a sport-by-sport approach to transgender participation that preserves opportunity for transgender student-athletes while balancing fairness, inclusion and safety for all who compete. The new policy, effective immediately, aligns transgender student-athlete participation for college sports with recent policy changes from the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee and International Olympic Committee.

Like the Olympics, the updated NCAA policy calls for transgender participation for each sport to be determined by the policy for the national governing body of that sport, subject to ongoing review and recommendation by the NCAA Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports to the Board of Governors. If there is no NGB policy for a sport, that sport’s international federation policy would be followed. If there is no international federation policy, previously established IOC policy criteria would be followed.

The Board of Governors urged the divisions to provide flexibility to allow for additional eligibility if a transgender student-athlete loses eligibility based on the policy change provided they meet the newly adopted standards.

The policy is effective starting with the 2022 winter championships. Transgender student-athletes will need to document sport-specific testosterone levels beginning four weeks before their sport’s championship selections. Starting with the 2022-23 academic year, transgender student-athletes will need documented levels at the beginning of their season and a second documentation six months after the first. They will also need documented testosterone levels four weeks before championship selections. Full implementation would begin with the 2023-24 academic year.

John DeGioia, chair of the board and Georgetown president

“We are steadfast in our support of transgender student-athletes and the fostering of fairness across college sports. It is important that NCAA member schools, conferences and college athletes compete in an inclusive, fair, safe and respectful environment and can move forward with a clear understanding of the new policy.”

Mark Emmert, NCAA president

“Approximately 80% of U.S. Olympians are either current or former college athletes. This policy alignment provides consistency and further strengthens the relationship between college sports and the U.S. Olympics.”

Additionally, the NCAA’s Office of Inclusion and the Sport Science Institute released the Gender Identity and Student-Athlete Participation Summit Final Report (PDF). The report assists ongoing membership efforts to support inclusion, fairness, and the mental and physical health of transgender and non-binary student-athletes in collegiate sport.

The Board of Governors met Wednesday in Indianapolis as part of the 2022 NCAA Convention. For more on key topics from the 2022 NCAA Convention, visit ncaa.org/convention.