After the Iowa Program Cut, Preston Planells Lands at Utah

Preston Planells has landed on his feet at the University of Utah after the elimination of the University of Iowa swimming and diving program where he spent his freshman season in 2019-20.

“I want to thank Iowa for the friendships, the connections, and the lessons that it has given me after 1 year! I’m forever grateful for being a part of such an amazing team and even more the family that I was brought into. With that being said I’ll be continuing my academic and athletic career at The University of Utah! I want to thank my coaches, teammates, and especially my family for supporting me through all of this. I’m so excited to become a UTE!!”

Planells grew up in Upland, California. He attended Damien High School and swam for BREA Aquatics before heading off to Iowa City in the fall of 2019. Planells thrived both athletically and academically at Iowa, making Dean’s List for the spring semester of his freshman year and notching the 8th-fastest 200 back time in school history, an NCAA “B” qualifying time of 1:43.89. He scored at 2020 B1G Championships in the 200 back, placing 16th with a time of 1:45.66.

His best events include:

Event Pre-college PB Collegiate PB
100 Back 49.44 48.81
200 Back 1:47.79 1:43.89
100 Fly 51.96 52.96
200 IM 1:50.99 1:50.53

Planells will be enrolling at Utah in the spring semester of the 2020-21 school year. He has chosen to redshirt the entire season and will start competing in 2021-22 with 3 years of eligibility left. Also starting for the Utes in the fall of 2021 will be class of 2025 verbal commits Baylor Lewis, Jacob Dix, Lucas Calderon, and Sam Tenhulzen. Planells will immediately jump to the top of the program in the 200 back and will have a strong training group made up of Utah backstrokers JP Hynes (48.37/1:51.29 last season), Max Hernandez-Nietling (49.32/1:56.34), Robert King (1:45.91), and Jackson Cunningham (51.65/1:47.01).

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1 year ago

Is it just me or does Iowa have like 20 swimmers under 1:45 in the 200 back

Time For Barta To Go
Reply to  yaboi
1 year ago

Doesn’t matter. They’ve been “Cancelled” (nom de jure).

1 year ago

Iowa did not just cut swimming programs, they lost 60-70 great women and men and students. What a big loss. But sure enough, their dummy AD is still there. Hopefully he willl follow Iowa President who is retiring, very soon.

Time For Barta To Go
Reply to  PsychoDad
1 year ago


“No amount of fundraising, including full funding these programs through endowment, will reverse this decision”.

Get out, swimmers and divers. You’re not wanted here. Even if it costs the university nothing.

About Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant

Anne Lepesant is the mother of four daughters, all of whom swam in college. With an undergraduate degree from Princeton (where she was an all-Ivy tennis player) and an MBA from INSEAD, she worked for many years in the financial industry, both in France and the U.S. Anne is currently …

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