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In an interview during the 2012 Summer Olympics, Josh Morgan, her then-AASC coach, said there was no indication in those years just how fast she would one day become.
He said she started to show real potential, later, in the spring of her junior year in high school when she went to a 2007 Junior National Team competition.
Allison Rodgers Schmitt (born June 7, 1990) is an American competition swimmer who specializes in freestyle events, and is an eight-time Olympic medalist.
In her Olympic debut at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, Schmitt won a bronze medal as a member of the 4×200-meter freestyle relay.
It's been an amazing journey, but more than that, it's shaped who I am as a person. I believe that I literally have the best friends anyone could ever imagine hoping for, and I met almost all of them because of swimming.
Taking in all the memories with these amazing people, I feel pretty lucky with the paths I have crossed, and the people I have met because of swimming." At the 2008 Summer Olympics, Schmitt won a bronze medal in the 4×200-meter freestyle relay with Natalie Coughlin, Caroline Burckle and Katie Hoff.
Schmitt was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 1990 to Ralph and Gail Schmitt.
"I thought about quitting," Schmitt said, "but stayed one more season and loved it." Prior to settling on swimming, she said she tried soccer, dance, basketball, volleyball, softball; and though she said she had the equipment for hockey, she decided to swim instead.
Calling it "her first real breakout swim," he said she went "from pretty fast to really fast," dropping four to five seconds off her 200-meter freestyle short course time of normally around a minute fifty-two seconds, down to around a minute forty-seven, thereby putting Schmitt in what Morgan called "elite company." Schmitt went to Canton High School in Canton Township, Michigan, from which she graduated in the spring of 2008.
During her senior year, as she continued to swim at what had, by then, become Club Wolverine on the University of Michigan campus in nearby Ann Arbor, she began training alongside Olympian Michael Phelps under the guidance of Phelps's long-time coach, Michigan Wolverines head coach Bob Bowman.
In her second event, the 200-meter freestyle, she won a silver medal finishing behind world record holder Federica Pellegrini by 1.98 seconds.
Schmitt's time of .96 was good enough for the American record.