LAWRENCE, Kan. - University of Kansas head coach Clark Campbell and assistant coach and recruiting coordinator Jen Fox announced the fall signing of Hendersonville, Tenn., senior Abigail Anderson and Derby, Kan., senior Stephanie Payne to the KU swimming and diving program Tuesday. Anderson and Payne signed National Letters of Intent to join the program for the 2008-09 season.
Anderson joins the Jayhawks from Middle Tennessee Swim Club under coach Craig Chlasta. Anderson, who attends Hendersonville High School, reeled in four top-16 finishes at the 2007 Tennessee High School State Meet in Nashville, Tenn., including two individual finishes and two relay finishes. Anderson placed sixth in the 100-yard backstroke and 14th in the 200-yard IM, in addition to being a member of the sixth-place 400-yard free relay and sixth-place 200-yard medley relay.
A three-time high school All-American, Anderson was an automatic All-American selection for her contribution to the 200 Medley Relay in 2007. She additionally received All-American status for her 100-yard back finish at the 2006 Tennessee State Meet.
"Abigail will be coming to KU with a tremendous upside as she has so much potential in the backstroke, fly and free," Campbell said. "We are really looking forward watching Abigail's progress as a collegiate athlete."
Under coach Eric Nelson of the Wichita Swim Club, Payne committed to Kansas as a Derby High School senior. Leading Derby to a fourth-place finish at the 2007 Kansas High School State Meet, Payne finished second in both the 200-yard IM and 100-yard breast. She was also a member of the fourth-place 200-yard free relay team and the eighth-place 200-yard medley relay.
Topping her high school career accolades, Payne is a three-time Kansas high school All-State first-team selection, in addition to being a national qualifier. Payne is expected to make an instant impact for Kansas in the butterfly, IM and breaststroke events.
"We are so excited about Stephanie choosing to be a Jayhawk," Campbell said. "It is so important for our program to draw the best Kansas athletes and Stephanie certainly fits the bill. Watching her compete, you can see right away her grit and determination to be the best."
"Both Abigail and Stephanie will make an immediate impact in the Big 12," Campbell said. "It's going to be really fun watching them both qualify and potentially score at the NCAA Championships."