Inside with Brett Hawke: Eric Shanteau

Eric Shanteau is a 2x Olympian, World Champion swimmer, and cancer destroyer. He also holds the American Record for Most Times Getting 3rd at US Olympic Trials (5x) as well as the AR for Most Events Getting 3rd at OT’s (200 IM, 400 IM, 100 Breast, 200 Breast).

Shanteau grew up swimming for Swim Atlanta and Chris Davis and was one of the four Auburn Tigers (George Bovell (Episode #111), Doug Van Wie, and Kurt Cady) that went 32-4-4 in their NCAA swimming career. That’s 32 dual meet wins (and 0 losses), 4 SEC Championships, and 4 NCAA Titles — completely undefeated.

In the mid-2000s, while Shanteau grew into one of the world’s best IM’ers, so did two other young Americans. Just so happens they turned out to be the two most decorated swimmers ever: Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte.

At the 2004 Olympic Trials, Shanteau placed 3rd behind Phelps and Lochte. He also placed 3rd in the 400 IM behind Phelps and Erik Vendt.

The same thing happened at the 2008 Olympic Trials: 3rd in the 200 IM behind Phelps and Lochte. 3rd in the 100 Breast.

Finally, his opportunity came in the 200 Breast, qualifying for his first Olympics in 2008. Prior to the Games, Shanteau was diagnosed with testicular cancer. He opted to swim before going under the knife.

Shanteau popped off at World Championships in 2009. The famous Rome meet. He won a Bronze medal in the 200 IM and a Silver in the 200 Breast which was an American Record of 2:07​.42.

In 2012, he qualified 2nd behind Brendan Hansen in the 100 Breast which led him to win an Olympic gold medal in the 400 Medley Relay by swimming on the morning relay. Also, at the 2012 Olympic Trials, he got — you guessed it — 3rd yet again — this time in the 200 Breast.

Shanteau married another Auburn All-American, Jeri Moss.


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