SEC 100 Breast Runner-Up Liam Bell of Alabama Enters NCAA Transfer Portal

Liam Bell has entered the NCAA transfer portal after his freshman season with the Alabama Crimson Tide.

TOP TIMES PRE-COLLEGE

  • 50 free – 20.29
  • 100 free – 44.18
  • 200 free – 1:39.73
  • 100 breast – 52.21
  • 200 breast – 1:57.30
  • 100 fly – 48.78
  • 200 IM – 1:48.85

LIFETIME BESTS WHILE AT ALABAMA

  • 100 breast – 51.39
  • 200 breast – 1:52.93
  • 200 IM – 1:44.35

Bell, a strong commit (54.0/2:00 in the breaststroke events) when he was recruited in the fall of 2018, improved further in his senior year, getting down to 52.21 in the 100 and 1:57.30 in the 200. In his freshman campaign with Alabama, he made huge drops in the 200 breast and 200 IM especially, while taking a good chunk of time off of his 100 breast.

While the 2020 NCAA Championships were canceled due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, Bell was seeded to make the 100 breast A-final and the 200 breast B-final. With the 2019-20 NCAA season all but concluded, Bell was the fastest freshman in the country in the 100 breast, just ahead of Texas first-year Caspar Corbeau (51.46). His season culminated at the 2020 SEC Championships, where he was the 100 breast runner-up and placed fourth in the 200 breast, while also winning the 200 IM C-final.

Bell had committed to the Alabama program prior to their hiring of current head coach, Coley Stickels.

It’s unknown as of this posting where Bell plans on going next, but he’d be a prime pickup for any program in the country with his breaststroke speed.

Next year, Alabama still returns rising sophomore Derek Maas, who improved to 51.81 in the 100 breast and 1:53.15 in the 200 breast in his freshman campaign with the Crimson Tide. Maas was seeded T-10th in the 100 breast and T-20th in the 200 breast for the 2020 NCAA Champs.

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Jamie
1 year ago

Please NC State!!

Riley
Reply to  Jamie
1 year ago

Yeah I’d love to see them finally with a national level breaststroker since Molacek transitioned to sprinting when he transferred. Somewhere like Indiana seems more likely though

Lime disease
Reply to  Riley
1 year ago

If he came to Alabama to swim for Jonty, I don’t think he will go to Indiana where Jonty got fired..

Reid
Reply to  Riley
1 year ago

They’ve recruited plenty of high level breaststrokers. It seems the issue is the coaching, and if I were a breaststroker I’d look elsewhere.

Jamie
Reply to  Reid
1 year ago

What high level breaststrokers have they recruited? The women’s side is loaded with high level breaststrokers, so it’s not coaching.

TBC
Reply to  Reid
1 year ago

If you look to the women’s program, you would be proven very wrong. Which high level breaststrokers have they recruited in recent years?

Swimfan
1 year ago

Very interesting. Not sure why he would leave after those drops if not for personal reasons

SoCal Coach
Reply to  Swimfan
1 year ago

Hey Swimfan – go back and read the comments for the Jack Blake story. Therein lies your answer.

Justanotherfreestyler
Reply to  Swimfan
1 year ago

It seems Coley is a polarizing figure. Ryan Held sure does love him though and the man is an amazing sprint coach.

Bula
1 year ago

Bama also lost a commit to Michigan…

Swimgirl
Reply to  Bula
1 year ago

Who?

Bailey
Reply to  Bula
1 year ago

Who is the commit?

JCO
Reply to  Bailey
1 year ago

Greta Gidley

Howard
1 year ago

I’d go to UNC to swim for Gangloff!!!

Billc
Reply to  Howard
1 year ago

I would stay put after those time drops.

Yup
Reply to  Howard
1 year ago

Unless he cares about academics

Atl coach
Reply to  Yup
1 year ago

That’s the main reason he is transferring. I’m not his coach but know him well and he’s a great kid!

ACC fan
Reply to  Howard
1 year ago

The baby blue color is just not a good look on a man!

Cow milk
1 year ago

Go to Michigan. One of the best places for IM and breastroke… plus, they graduated a couple of breastrokers and Liam could probably get some good money and make a big TEAM impact

Mark Nedza
1 year ago

Maybe he should go back home to Georgia.

Joe
Reply to  Mark Nedza
1 year ago

UGA could be nice next year with Acevedo, Murphy, Urlando, Magahey, Downing.

That Guy
1 year ago

#ColeyEffect

Billc
Reply to  That Guy
1 year ago

I’ll take those results. Didn’t Liam switch teams multiple times in Atlanta? Looks like the same pattern here.

Longtimereader firsttimecaller
Reply to  Billc
1 year ago

Every time I wonder why a kid left a program, I come to the comments to see his former teammates rip him to protect themselves. Then I know all I need to know.

Ghost
Reply to  Billc
1 year ago

Exactly MULTIPLE club teams

Mental health
1 year ago

Who knows what he went through or what his reasoning is. You have to respect a guy for whatever is going on under the surface.

About Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon

Karl Ortegon studied sociology at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT, graduating in May of 2018. He began swimming on a club team in first grade and swam four years for Wesleyan.

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