Amherst College Withdraws Team from Men’s NCAA Championships

The Amherst men’s swimming & diving team has withdrawn from the 2018 NCAA Division III Championships after a violation of team rules, the school confirmed to SwimSwam on Saturday. Their withdraw opens up 9 new spots in the meet – those changes have not been published on the NCAA or USA Swimming website, but invited athletes have been notified.

“Coach Nichols discovered a violation of team rules concerning alcohol policy by the men’s swimming and diving team,” a spokesperson said. “In consultation with the Athletic Director, he decided not to permit team members to attend the NCAA Division III Swimming and Diving Championships.”

Sources tell SwimSwam that evidence was found of alcohol consumption on the team bus after the NESCAC Conference Championship meet. At that meet, Amherst finished 3rd behind Tufts (1671 points) and Williams College (1590 points).

Based on psych sheet scoring, the Amherst men were projected to finish 14th at the NCAA Championships. The Amherst women’s team, projected to finish 12th, are still expected to participate.

Denison has the first 3 alternates to the meet, but because they’ve already had 18 swimmers invited, those names will be skipped (unless Denison decides to scratch an already-invited swimmer instead). Because of the way the Division III selections work, these invites are not inconsequential: all will be well within striking distance for points, seeded 16th or 17th in their events (with 16 scoring).

Swimmers who earn invites based on Amherst’s scratch.

  1. Chris Dabrowski, Wabash, 1650 free – 15:49.50
  2. Kyle Shadeck, Keene St., 200 fly – 1:49.18
  3. Samuel Willettt, Claremont Mudd-Scripps, 200 back – 1:49.01
  4. Aaron Green, Widener, 100 free – 44.81
  5. Justin Chiu, MIT, 100 breast – 55.62
  6. Drew Hamilton, Case Western, 500 free – 4:30.70
  7. Alex Menzer, Swarthmore, 500 free – 4:30.70
  8. Jacob Cost, Wheaton (MA), 100 back – 49.31
  9. Connor Sweeney, MIT, 200 fly – 1:49.30

Included on the list are Widener’s only swimming invitee, Aaron Green; Wabash’s only swimming invitee, Chris Dabrowski; and 2 additional swimmers from MIT, who are seeded to finish 6th at the meet. Among those are Connor Sweeney, who probably didn’t expect to get a call-up as the 13th alternate.

Leave a Reply

20 Comment threads
77 Thread replies
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
41 Comment authors
newest oldest most voted
Jay ryan

I am shocked…SHOCKED…that there might be alcohol consumed upon college campuses!


FYI: For an elite liberal arts college (top 3 in the country), Amherst’s men swim team did not even make to the CSCAA ScholarAA list, which requires an average of 3.0 across athletes.

Not a coincidence.

See news below.


all because of that darned alcohol!

Swim Fan

That could be because they simply did not apply. The Amherst women and both Williams men and women are not on the list either.


I would hope you are right, Swim Fan. Last time I checked all Ivy, Stanford, Cal in D1, MIT, Tufts, Johns Hopkins, Chicago, Swarthmore, Pomona, CMS, Cal Tech, are on the list of schools with NCAA swim programs. These are all elite colleges with talented and hardworking students. If they didn’t apply, that would be a pretty significant mistake. Lots of top SoCal swimmers select these schools because of the balance of being a student and an athlete.

DIIIer (Polar Bear on the other board)

A number of the NESCAC schools are prohibited from applying based on school policy, including Amherst

Beverly Drangus

You do realize that gpa is not a standardized measurement right?


Please consult with any college admission counselor on what the most important academic criterion is, as I would think GPA is the most important signal.


I’ll just leave this here. Might want to fact check yourself buddy. 3.46 Team GPA


HMMMMM, Thanks for proving my point that Amherst did indeed apply for this recognition. Great they got on the list in 2016-2017, but apparently they didn’t in 2017-2018.


Not on college campus – on a bus coming back from a swim meet paid for by the college. This kind of action is begging or even dares those responsible to respond.

We’ve made short sighted decisions when we were young (or at least I did), hopefully this will be one that sticks with them filed under “what was I thinking”.


Good for the Coach making stand on policy.

Peter E

Any word on why they would enter individuals and not relays in a situation where 9 swimmers were pulled out at once? Their original goal for entries was to get 16 lines deep in individuals and relays and they only made it to line 15 for most relays. Could get closer to their goal by inviting more relays.


The rules say to enter the alternates as individuals and not as relays. There is no provision to do anything different, and to do anything other than strictly follow the rules for placing alternates would be wrong.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

Read More »

Don't want to miss anything?

Subscribe to our newsletter and receive our latest updates!