BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The Southeastern Conference finished the 2020 Tokyo Olympics with a record 79 medals won by current and former athletes. The 38 gold medals were also a record for the conference.
This year's haul exceeds the previous record of 54 total medals set at the 2012 London Games, as well as the previous record for gold medals of 29 set at the 2000 Sydney Games. In addition, 2020 is the eighth straight that SEC competitors have collected 40 or more medals in a single Olympiad.
Sixty-three percent of all medals won by SEC athletes came since the 2000 Games. Each Olympics medal count: 1920 - 1, 1924 - 3, 1932 - 2, 1936 - 2, 1948 - 9, 1952 - 5, 1956 - 1, 1960 - 2, 1964 - 2, 1968 - 1, 1972 - 6, 1976 - 11, 1980 - 4, 1984 - 46, 1988 - 24, 1992 - 40, 1996 - 38, 2000 - 42, 2004 - 53, 2008 - 58, 2010 - 1 (Winter), 2012 - 54, 2016 - 47, 2020 - 79.
The 79 medals were earned by 62 athletes with Florida's Caeleb Dressel winning the most with five golds in swimming for Team USA. Additional multi-medal winners were Erika Brown - Swimming, Bryce Deadmon - Track & Field, Bobby Finke - Swimming, Hali Flickinger - Swimming, Lynna Irby - Track & Field, Sunisa Lee - Gymnastics, Sydney McLaughlin - Track & Field, Athing Mu - Track & Field, Vernon Norwood - Track & Field, Allison Schmitt - Swimming, and Zach Apple - Swimming.
Of the 62 medalists, 37 were women (59.7%), who won 41 medals (51.8 %), including 18 gold (47.3%). Track & Field athletes won the most medals with 27, followed closely by swimming with 25. Medals were also won in baseball, basketball, 3x3 basketball, cycling, gymnastics, shooting, soccer, softball, tennis and volleyball.
The SEC had a record 218 athletes representing all 14 universities, one of only three conferences in the country that had all of its schools represented. Those 218 individuals represented 58 National Olympic Committees, led by the 82 representatives for Team USA. Other NOC that included SEC competitors were Trinidad & Tobago, Jamaica, Canada, Mexico, Bahamas, Germany, Puerto Rico, South Africa, Australia, Estonia, France, Great Britain, Grenada, Ireland, Israel, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Antigua, Austria, Brazil, Bulgaria, Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, Norway, Peru, Sweden, US Virgin Islands, Algeria, Argentina, Aruba, Cyprus, Denmark, Ecuador, Ghana, Guatemala, Guyana, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait1, Lebanon, Liberia, Portugal, Saint Lucia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovenia, Spain, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Tonga, Uruguay, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe.
Overall, athletes from conference schools have won 531 medals. Of those 531, only one has been won in the Winter Olympics. Former Florida track & field athlete, Steve Mesler won gold in the four-man bobsled in 2010.
All 14 member schools have athletes that have won medals. Florida leads with 143 individuals, Georgia with 69, followed by 60 from Auburn and Tennessee, 45 from LSU, 38 from Alabama, Kentucky with 28, Texas A&M with 26, 23 from Arkansas, South Carolina with 17, Missouri with eight, seven from Ole Miss, four from Mississippi State and Vanderbilt with three.