19.8 Sprinter Emilio Perez De-Commits from Arizona State, Signs with Alabama

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Elmbrook Swim Club’s Emilio Perez, a senior at Greenfield High School, has signed with the University of Alabama for this fall. Perez had initially made a verbal pledge to Arizona State University in the Pac-12.

 I chose Alabama because of their amazing competitive environment and how I fit in with the team. Additionally, their impressive improvements as a team in the rankings was a key factor in my decision.


  • 50 free – 19.81
  • 100 free – 44.53
  • 200 free – 1:41.23
  • 100 back – 50.75
  • 100 fly – 47.27

“At that time I was presented with an amazing opportunity,” said Perez about his initial commitment. “Due to personal reasons, I had to opt out before signing.”

Last weekend, Perez had a huge meet at the Wisconsin HS Division I Championships, torching state records with titles in the 50 free (19.81) and 100 fly (47.27). He also was 22.14 leading off Greenfield Co-op’s 200 medley relay and 44.87 leading off their state title-earning 400 free relay. When he committed to ASU last March, Perez was 20.40 in the 50 free and 47.97 in the 100 fly, so his recruiting value has only gone up since the beginning of the pandemic.

Back in 2019, Perez was a finalist at the Junior National Championships in the 50 free, going a 23.50 in prelims and 23.63 in finals to place 12th overall. His best time of 23.25 is just .06 off of the Wave I Olympic Trials cut.

Alabama has had an exceptional sprint program over the last several years, and are led this season by star freshman Matt King (19.2/42.1 this year so far). Known for coaching sprinters, Coley Stickels resigned from the head coaching role at Alabama in December after 18 months in the role, and associate head coach Ozzie Quevedo is leading the program the rest of this season on an interim basis. Volunteer assistant and former star American sprinter Margo Geer is taking over the head coaching role for next season, and she announced last night she was retiring from the sport after initially planning on making a run at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

Perez joins Ben Hines, Top 20-HM Braden RollinsCharlie HawkeMateo MiceliNicklas Bohn and Jackson Dement in Alabama’s class of 2025. Hines and Rollins are two other big sprint free pickups for the Crimson Tide, with Hines at 20.0/44.9 and Rollins at 20.1/43.8.

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Predict a future transfer
1 year ago

Alabama is burning. Nuts for doing this.

Dr Deluxe
Reply to  Predict a future transfer
1 year ago

For the sake discussion, let’s say that the moves in Tuscaloosa to change the swimming and diving program ARE making lots of us scratching our collective heads !
#1. Getting rid of a legitimate and experienced ( but controversial ) Div. 1 coach.
#2. Hiring an inexperienced , fresh out of pro swimming athlete with connections to the
current Alabama AD which in turn has a dash of influence in the Univ. of Arizona /
Frank Busch realm ( which CAN’T be a good sign!)
But let’s not forget that Ozzy is still there ( continuity) , the facilities are 2nd – to none,
the team DOES have an actual bonafide sprinter who can… Read more »

Reply to  Dr Deluxe
1 year ago

Sort of. The facilities are not great compared to TN, UGA, Aub….so they are middle of the road for facilities in SEC.
Hiring a coach with no work experience for this position is senseless (not to mention controversial) and will negatively impact recruiting for the long term.
The “bonafide”sprinter swam with and was recruited by Coley. No idea what happened with him but he can certainly coach and will be tough to replace in that area.
The budget will likely be ok at Bama for the team, but i agree the hire does smell of Arizona /Frank Busch type stench.

Reply to  PappaSnurf
1 year ago

If one enjoys training in a beautiful new outdoor pool, as well as in an updated, 50 meter indoor pool; lifting in the largest weight training facility in the world; rubbing shoulders with Devonta Smith, Mac Jones and Najee Harris in perhaps the nicest dining facility in the country, then Bama is the place to be!👍👍

Dr Deluxe
1 year ago

Red shirting the entire ASU swim team for a year has consequences and for the recruiting class that WAS supposed to start in September of 2021, that puts them “behind the 8 – ball” in terms of opportunities. Not sure what the coaches and athletic department thought would happen but regardless, ASU has lost out on a very promising young swimmer in Emilio and their loss is Alabama’s gain !

1 year ago

Arizona State getting in the decommit/transfer game early….

Meow Meow
1 year ago

People transferring from ASU before they even go now.

1 year ago

Son…two wrongs don’t make a right.

Reply to  Guerra
1 year ago

Indiana would be two wrongs on its own

1 year ago

Got that #MargoMentality

1 year ago

ASU has a swim team?!

1 year ago

Margo Geer getting some good ones

Reply to  Hswimmer
1 year ago

Correct that, Ozzy is convincing kids that BAMA is still the place to be.

1 year ago

How about we just let it be a win for Ozzy and Margo both?

Bama factor
Reply to  Hswimmer
1 year ago

According to the team he actually verbally committed to UA several months ago prior to Geer’s assignment

About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

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