Breaststroker, IMer Sean Swift Decommits from Indiana; Chooses Cal Instead

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After originally committing to Indiana last fall, high school senior Sean Swift has opted to change his verbal commitment and will instead head to Cal in the class of 2021.

According to his mother, Jennifer Swift, Swift decided that he wanted to stay closer to home and train outside year-round in California. Sean Swift attends Rio Americano High School in Sacramento, California and trains with the Sierra Marlins Swim Team.

In making his announcement, Swift thanked both the Indiana coaching staff for “all the support” they gave him throughout the process and “the opportunity to swim at such a historic program,” as well as the Cal staff for offering him a spot in their program.

With careful consideration, I have made the decision to stay closer to home & withdraw my previous verbal commitment from Indiana University. I am very excited to announce that I will be continuing my academic & swimming career at the University of California Berkeley!! I would like to thank coach Looze & the Indiana staff for all the support they have given me throughout the recruiting process & the opportunity to swim at such a historic program. I would also like to thank coach Durden & coach Kreitler for offering me a spot in their program. Couldn’t be more excited to be apart of the Berkeley family. Go bears🐻🟡🔵

Swift’s original commitment to Indiana came fairly early in the recruiting process, in November of 2019. In spite of having his high school championships canceled in the spring because of the coronavirus outbreak, he was able to go best times in his 4 best events at February’s Carlsbad Sectionals Championships, in spite of what his mom says was just one day of rest.

Time Drops from November 2019 to Present

When Committing to Indiana
When Committing to Cal
100 breast 56.68 56.06
200 breast 2:02.38 1:59.77
200 IM 1:50.33 1:49.26
400 IM 4:00.35 3:54.82

In making the change, he’s decommitting from a program with one of the best breaststroke legacies in the country at Indiana. Among the swimmers that the Hoosiers have churned out in the last few years include NCAA Champion and American Record holder Ian Finnerty, Olympic Champion and World Record holder Lilly King, and individual Olympic bronze medalist Cody Miller.

Last season, both programs had breaststrokers qualified for the NCAA Championships, which were ultimately canceled because of the burgeoning coronavirus pandemic.

Cal boasted then-sophomore Reece Whitley, who was seeded 2nd in the 100 breast and 1st in the 200 breast for the NCAA Championships. Indiana was sending sprint specialist Zane Backes, who was one spot behind Whitley in the 100 breaststroke as the 3rd seed.

Both programs have also had success in the IMs. Last season, for example, Cal had 3 of the top 8 seeds in the 400 IM (and 4 of the top 15) including #1 seed Hugo Gonzalez. Cal also had 5 swimmers invited in the 200 IM.

Indiana had several IMers qualify for the NCAA Championships as well, including the 11th seed in the 200 IM Mohamed Hassan.

In short, both programs have proven capable of developing swimmers with Swift’s specialty, but with the move, he’ll now be about a 90 minute drive from home rather than a 6 hour flight from home.

He joins a strong class of 2021 for the defending NCAA Champion Cal Bears. Also committed on that list are:

  • Swedish international Robin Hanson
  • fellow Californian Gabriel Jett (BOTR) from Clovis.
  • Iowa native and #14 in the class Trent Frandson
  • Concord, California native Jacob Soderlund
  • Truckee, California native Kai Crews (BOTR)
  • New Jerseyan and #6 recruit in the class Jack Alexy
  • Michael McGillvray, a distance swimmer from Canada

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17 days ago

With everything you see about Indiana on this site, this seemed like a no brainer. Plus the chance to train outside? And the Cal education? Easy choice.

Last edited 17 days ago by SWIMGUY12345
17 days ago

According to his mother, Jennifer Swift, Swift decided that he wanted to stay closer to home and train outside year-round in California”

I don’t typically like decommits but after spending many winters in the Midwest, this is actually a very good reason to stay home especially when you’re used to training outside in the winter vs. running to the pool in your parka and 5 layers of clothes. Respect.

B1G Daddy
Reply to  YeeHaw
17 days ago

Was I the only one wondering why his Mom was interviewed? The second I read that quote I immediately questioned who was making this decision.

Reply to  YeeHaw
17 days ago

I think the new system of early signings recommits and 16-17 year olds changing their minds will happen…inevitable!? And i think coaches will increase productivity decrease their interest for numerous reasons…not always the athletes fault!

17 days ago

Will Seeliger also be part of this class, or did he make it over and join the team this year?

Reply to  Braden Keith
17 days ago

👍 thanks!

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, …

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