Iowa To Cut Women’s & Men’s Swimming & Diving After 2020-2021 Season

A report from Fansided’s DearOldGold.com says that the University of Iowa will cut men’s and women’s swimming & diving, along with two other sports in a press conference later today.

Update: the school has confirmed the news in a press release.

Iowa will hold a press conference at 12:30 today, DearOldGold reports on Twitter. DearOldGold is an Iowa Hawkeyes-focused website that is part of Fansided’s multi-site sports network. The tweet says that Iowa will cut four programs (swimming & diving, men’s gymnastics, men’s tennis) at the end of this school year, news that another source has confirmed to SwimSwam.

Iowa competes in the Big Ten, which announced this month it would be postponing the fall football season. Iowa was already facing about $15 million in athletics budget reductions due to the worldwide coronavirus pandemic, and that was before the cancelation of football.

The Hawkeyes finished 9th among 13 women’s programs and 6th among 10 men’s programs at the 2020 Big Ten Championships. They had qualified two women and two men for the NCAA Championships, which were canceled amid the coronavirus pandemic.

An Iowa cut would be by far the biggest program cut in an offseason that has already been brutal for college swimming at the Division I level. Five schools in Division I have already cut swimming & diving programs this offseason:

  • Boise State (women)
  • UConn (men)
  • Dartmouth (women & men)
  • East Carolina (women & men)
  • Western Illionis (women & men) – indefinitely suspended

You can see a full list of the aquatic program cuts so far this offseason here.

Iowa would be the first Power-5 school to cut swimming & diving programs in both genders since Clemson eliminated their men’s swimming & diving and women’s swimming programs in 2012. More recently, Clemson cut women’s diving in 2017, and Oregon State cut its women’s swimming & diving program last year.

An Iowa cut would also be surprising because the school has one of the nation’s better (and newer) facilities. The $69 million Campus Recreation and Wellness Center opened just ten years ago in 2010. (The school put $5-6 million into pool repairs just last summer).

That pool has already hosted multiple Big Ten Championships along with the 2015 Men’s NCAA Championships. Iowa is also the host of the 2021 Men’s NCAA Championships – if the reports are correct, that would be the potential last meet for Iowa’s program before it’s eliminated.

Update: Iowa president Bruce Harreld and athletic director Gary Barta released the following statement:

The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a financial exigency which threatens our continued ability to adequately support 24 intercollegiate athletics programs at the desired championship level. With the Big Ten Conference’s postponement of fall competition on August 11, UI Athletics now projects lost revenue of approximately $100M and an overall deficit between $60-75M this fiscal year. A loss of this magnitude will take years to overcome. We have a plan to recover, but the journey will be challenging.

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Swimmer
1 month ago

Dark times ahead for swimming

Rocket
Reply to  Swimmer
1 month ago

This won’t be the last one

ERVINFORTHEWIN
Reply to  Swimmer
1 month ago

if it was only for swimming but it goes way deeper now

Justin Thompson
Reply to  Swimmer
1 month ago

Dominoes starting to fall. You don’t take a year off and nothing happens.

James Beam
1 month ago

Sad day…..I wonder if any of them can transfer right now or is it too late if other colleges have started?

Rick Paine
Reply to  James Beam
1 month ago

It’s possible, but late. They could transfer at the semester.

Ken
Reply to  James Beam
1 month ago

Is any team in the water?

GA Boy
Reply to  Ken
1 month ago

Lots of teams are in the water.

Justin Thompson
Reply to  James Beam
1 month ago

Where are they going to transfer to? Only a handful of football programs still playing and how football goes so goes swimming to a large extent.

Swimmin85
Reply to  Justin Thompson
1 month ago

Go to mid major schools WITHOUT football

CA_LAWYER
Reply to  Swimmin85
1 month ago

Are there any still clinging to a season?

Fiveos
Reply to  CA_LAWYER
1 month ago

Horizon League is still a go, just delayed.

Deepsouth
Reply to  CA_LAWYER
1 month ago

Same for big east

Vanilla Gorilla
1 month ago

Ugh, this is terrible news

CA_LAWYER
Reply to  Vanilla Gorilla
1 month ago

At least the students are safe.

Sid Frisco
Reply to  CA_LAWYER
1 month ago

From what? That’s just ignorant. Safe from what?

CU_2023
Reply to  Sid Frisco
1 month ago

Safe from Covid-19. If you followed the comments in any of the Covid stories on Swimswam this past month and read the comments section you would know that they are split between accepting the risk vs. postponing events. So on one side of the coin it sucks the season is cancelled but on the other everything from online classes to cancelling sports is done to keep the students, faculty, staff, officials, and fans safe.

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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