The Times reports Schooling will join Lopez — currently the head coach at Virginia Tech — in Virginia this Sunday and train there through the Tokyo Games this summer (with a trip back to Singapore in March for the National Age Group Swimming Championships.)
The 24-year-old Schooling previously trained under Lopez, 51, while attending high school at The Bolles School in Florida from 2010 to 2014. He went on to swim for Eddie Reese at the University of Texas, during which time he won Olympic gold in the 100 fly in 2016, and became a 22-time All-American before graduating in 2018.
After serving as an assistant coach at Auburn, the Spanish Olympic medalist Lopez took over at Virginia Tech in 2018. He was head coach of the Singapore national team from 2015 to 2016 prior to his time at Auburn. Lopez has assembled a diverse pro group, called “Swim Pinnacle Racing,” in Blacksburg. The group, reported to have 15 members currently, includes Egyptian Olympian Farida Osmanand a slew of other Olympians and Olympic hopefuls.
Schooling has struggled to reclaim his spot atop the international ranks since his 2016 performance. He did not advance out of prelims in the 100 fly at the 2019 FINA World Championships last summer, finishing over 2.5 seconds behind his Rio-winning time. At the SEA Games last year, he won the 100 fly and took silver in the 100 free.