Sun Devils Split: Which Swimmers Went Where After Bob Bowman Left Arizona State for Texas

Now that the dust has settled from Bob Bowman’s move from Arizona State to Texas a couple months ago, let’s see where the top Sun Devil Aquatics swimmers ended up based on recent meet entries and hints on social media.

It’s no surprise that the IMers followed Michael Phelps‘ former mentor to Austin, with 400 IM world record holder Leon Marchand (who turned pro last month), reigning 400 IM Olympic champion Chase Kalisz, and reigning 400 IM Olympic silver medalist Jay Litherland officially representing Longhorn Aquatics for the first time at last weekend’s Speedo Grand Challenge in Irvine. Rising junior Hubert Kos, the 2023 world champion in the 200 back (1:54.14), joined them as well after announcing his transfer to Texas last month.

On the women’s side, Olympic medalists Simone Manuel and Regan Smith made the switch to Longhorn Aquatics along with recent ASU graduate Lindsay Looney. Like Smith, Looney also swims the 200 butterfly, placing 8th at the 2023 World Championships behind bronze medalist Smith.

Manuel’s move is more interesting considering most other sprinters chose to stay in Tempe with Herbie Behm, an innovative sprint coach who was promoted to head coach of the Sun Devils in the wake of Bowman’s departure. Manuel is coming off a strong showing in Irvine that saw her swim her fastest 100 freestyle (53.10) since 2019, ranking her 3rd among American women this season behind only Kate Douglass and Torri Huske.

Two-time Olympian Olivia Smoliga, Jack Dolan, and Grant House appear to be staying put in the ASU pro group while rising sophomore Ilya Kharun and rising junior Jonny Kulow look like they’re continuing their college careers with the Sun Devils.

There are still a few question marks remaining. Paige Madden and Drew Kibler traveled to the Speedo Grand Challenge with Bowman’s crew last weekend, but they competed under the New York Athletic Club (NYAC) banner. Meanwhile, Rio 2016 Olympic champion Ryan Held competed with Behm’s squad at the Sun Devil Open two weekends ago, but also as a member of NYAC instead of Sun Devil Aquatics.

Madden moved to Tempe last September after a year-long stint at Loughborough University in England. The 25-year-old University of Virginia graduate (’21) has her second Olympic appearance in her sights as the second-fastest 400 freestyler in the nation this season and the third-fastest 200 freestyler. There are less than a few weeks remaining until the 2024 U.S. Olympic Trials in Indianapolis.

Kibler was expected to follow Bowman to Texas since he competed collegiately for the Longhorns from 2018-22. The 24-year-old freestyle specialist said he would train with Carmel Swim Club leading up to the Paris Olympics this summer before moving to Tempe last August.

Held switched to training with ASU after barely missing his second Olympic team in 2021 despite a 6th-place finish in the 100 free at Trials. The 28-year-old NC State graduate has been with the Sun Devils since their pro group consisted of just himself, Smoliga, and two-time Olympic bronze medalist Hali Flickinger, who announced her retirement in January.

NCAA mile champion Zalan Sarkany, a rising junior, entered the transfer portal last month but has not offered any hints on his next destination while training for the Paris Olympics back home in Hungary. Rising junior Owen McDonald, the NCAA runner-up in the 200 IM and ASU’s third-highest scorer behind Marchand Kos, transferred to Indiana last month.

Following Bowman to Texas

Staying at Arizona State

Now Listed Under New York Athletic Club (NYAC)

Transferred Elsewhere

Still Unknown

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long ago polo
18 days ago

There are multiple ASU men with either NCAA Invited Times(SCY) or US Olympic Trials cuts (LCM) and/or USA Swimming National Team(USA-LCM) who are not mentioned in the article:

At ASU/Behm, as of summer meet attachments:

Jack Wadsworth 100 LCM Backstroke; 200 SCY Backstroke
Cale Martter 200 SCY IM, 400 LCM, SCY IM (NCAA B final), 200 SCY Breaststroke (NCAA B final)
Daniel Matheson 3 event NCAA scorer – 500, 400 IM, 1650; USA Nat team 800/1500, OT 200 Fly
Tiago Behar 200 SCY Free, sole winner of NCAA Elite 90 Academic Award
Andy Dobrzanski 100 SCY/LCM Breaststroke, 200 LCM Breaststroke
Reece Grady 400, 800, 1500, 4IM LCM (Has times but reps Great Britain)
Dylan… Read more »

Wiley
Reply to  long ago polo
17 days ago

You missed Isaac Fleig. Trial cuts in 400IM, 800 FR, and 1500 FR.

long ago polo
Reply to  Wiley
17 days ago

You are right! I thought I had seen another name. Thank you.

Ranger Coach
18 days ago

I somehow don’t think House will be too welcome in Austin.

Relax
19 days ago

Paige, Ryan, and Drew have been listed as NYAC swimmers this entire season. The question is where they’re training now.

Geo
Reply to  Relax
18 days ago

Does anyone know why they represent NYAC or what their connection is to the club?

Meow
Reply to  Geo
18 days ago

NYAC likes having Olympians and I think provides some financial support for them? Kate Douglass also swims for them.

Ranger Coach
Reply to  Geo
18 days ago

NYAC pays them. In Douglass’s case, she is from New York and NYAC really likes people who are good and from New York.

Happy Slappy
Reply to  Geo
18 days ago

Money and connections. NYAC has more, and better connections for life outside of swimming than any college.

Jalen T
19 days ago

Bob bowman only shows loyalty to Phelps. No other program or swimmers. Or national teams for that matter.

Summer in Paris
Reply to  Jalen T
19 days ago

I see no lies here 🤷‍♂️

Andrew
Reply to  Jalen T
19 days ago

rare insightful Jalen T comment

Mr Piano
Reply to  Jalen T
19 days ago

Would you be saying this if Nesty or Durden took the job? It’s a business. Bowman is making the right move for him, and ASU would not have had he not led the way to build it up.

And just because he’s an American does not mean he’s obligated to coach for them at international meets.

Jalen T
Reply to  Mr Piano
19 days ago

Bowman uses his Phelps privilege to get where he is. I am glad he is not the USA head coach. To have him follow Eddie Reese at Texas is also nauseating and script-like.

Admin
Reply to  Jalen T
19 days ago

Uhnnnnnnnnnnnn Leon Marchand?

maverick1993
Reply to  Braden Keith
19 days ago

Ofcourse you would stick close to the golden goose.

Jalen T
Reply to  Braden Keith
19 days ago

If he sticks with Marchand for 10-15 years then I’ll add Leon

Snarky
Reply to  Jalen T
19 days ago

Jalen’s mom let him use the computer again.

Z Tech
Reply to  Jalen T
18 days ago

“Phelps privilege” oh yeah being the guy who lead the GOAT to success I’d say is earned merit what are you on about

Jalen T
Reply to  Z Tech
18 days ago

Phelps would have been successful without Bowman. Bowman on the other hand would be nothing without Phelps. It took him how many years to accomplish something outside of Phelps??? He can get credit for Leon and ASU but not Phelps. Any coach would have succeeded with Phelps.

Mr Piano
Reply to  Jalen T
18 days ago

Phelps could have succeeded with any coach, but Bowman is the one who he attributes to all of his success to this day. I think I told you this before, but Phelps had multiple opportunities to leave Bob and go to any other coach in the world, but he always chose Bob.

Chase Kalisz, Leon Marchand, and Regan Smith also speak highly of Bob and his importance on their development. It seems like you just have an agenda.

Last edited 18 days ago by Mr Piano
Swim fan
Reply to  Jalen T
18 days ago

THAT. Is absurd. You obviously know very little about swimming and coaching to say such a thing.

swimswum
Reply to  Jalen T
18 days ago

I agree the insane, historically astounding talent is there, but it doesn’t hurt to attribute some credit to the coach that has helped to nurture that talent – physically and mentally.

Last edited 18 days ago by swimswum
Go... Go.... Go
Reply to  Jalen T
18 days ago

Come on, guys. It has been EIGHT years since Michael’s last sanctioned performance. Does everyone but SwimSwam commenters move on with time?

Admin
Reply to  Go... Go.... Go
18 days ago

Yeah, because basketball people never discuss Michael Jordan
Football people never discuss Steve Young or John Elway

This is sports, man.

swimswum
Reply to  Braden Keith
18 days ago

Period

long ago polo
Reply to  Braden Keith
17 days ago

Are you sure? Is swimming really a sport? Where is the ball?

long ago polo
Reply to  Braden Keith
17 days ago

I guess we think of Bowman (Phelps – Marchand) as Phil Jackson (Michael Jordan – Kobe/Shaq).

Admin
Reply to  long ago polo
17 days ago

Not a bad analogy.

h2olover
Reply to  Mr Piano
19 days ago

I would wager that Dave Durden, if he had accepted the Texas job, would have handled the internal communications quite differently than Bowman did.

I’m not saying that it wasn’t the best move for Bowman, but his departure sure angered most of the ASU swim family.

Andrew
Reply to  h2olover
19 days ago

durden would’ve been much worse communicating than Bowman lol

snailSpace
Reply to  Andrew
18 days ago

I don’t know if it could have been done any worse? Like maybe if he insulted them in the goodbye speech, but other than that, how Bob handled it was pretty much the worst.

bobthebuilderrocks
Reply to  snailSpace
18 days ago

Let’s get some details going. If we’re just going off the fact that the announcement was made after they won NCAA’s, that’s not a very good reason as to how “it was pretty much the worst”

snailSpace
Reply to  bobthebuilderrocks
18 days ago

Maybe, but the decision was made much earlier than April 1st. The proper thing to do is always going to be announcing it in time, so the athletes have time to prepare for the changing circumstances – that is usually how it is done: Eddie for example announced his departure well before he actually left.
I get that Texas fans are happy about Bowman’s move there, or that this opportunity is once in a lifetime – that doesn’t mean he couldn’t have done the “leaving ASU” part much better.

nealnan8
Reply to  Mr Piano
19 days ago

And how many program changes have Durden and Nesty made in say, the last 15-20

Inclusive Parent
Reply to  Jalen T
19 days ago

Are you calling Leon Marchand disloyal to France for coming to US to train? No. Because that’s called following the best opportunity. And Austin wins similarly for Bowman.

Ranger Coach
Reply to  Jalen T
18 days ago

Bowman spent close to a decade at ASU. If Texas, or anyone, came calling with a significant pay raise and facilities that are some of the best in the country, why would you not go?

Go... Go.... Go
Reply to  Ranger Coach
18 days ago

There is no question the finances, facility and history in Austin are undeniable. The ONLY issue is that Bob did not wait till the Trials were over before making the move. Major life disruption in dealing with an unnecessary stressor, to your MULTIPLE athletes (both collegiate and Pro) in the last 2+ months before team selection is unconscionable.

oxyswim
Reply to  Go... Go.... Go
17 days ago

Texas would not have been ok with their new coach that they were giving a 7 figure contract to saying he wasn’t going to stay for another 3 months. Recruiting is too important to the success of the program and Texas was already way behind on domestic 2025s.

long ago polo
Reply to  oxyswim
17 days ago

If they really wanted him, they’d have waited.

Sparkyyyy
19 days ago

will ASU win a title in the next 3 years. Upvote for yes downvote for no.

Summer in Paris
Reply to  Sparkyyyy
19 days ago

Lol no.

Alex Wilson
Reply to  Sparkyyyy
19 days ago

ASU will be in the running for the BIG 12 title.

KingDevil
Reply to  Alex Wilson
18 days ago

We have some ground to make up to be in contention for the National Championship in the next 3 years, but I’d bet we win the Big12 for the next several years. The women’s team should have a shot at that as well.

Go... Go.... Go
Reply to  Sparkyyyy
18 days ago

Win? Highly, HIGHLY improbable. Top 5, which they had never previously done till 2023, I’m gonna say, “YES.” Reasonable chancde.

long ago polo
Reply to  Go... Go.... Go
17 days ago

There are multiple ASU men with either NCAA Invited Times(SCY) or US Olympic Trials cuts (LCM) and/or USA Swimming National Team(USA-LCM) who are not mentioned in the article:
At ASU/Behm, as of summer meet attachments:
Jack Wadsworth 100 LCM Backstroke; 200 SCY Backstroke
Cale Martter 200 SCY IM, 400 LCM, SCY IM (NCAA B final), 200 SCY Breaststroke (NCAA B final)
Daniel Matheson 3 event NCAA scorer – 500, 400 IM, 1650; USA Nat team 800/1500, OT 200 Fly
Tiago Behar 200 SCY Free, sole winner of NCAA Elite 90 Academic Award
Andy Dobrzanski 100 SCY/LCM Breaststroke, 200 LCM Breaststroke
Reece Grady 400, 800, 1500, 4IM LCM (Has times but reps Great Britain)
… Read more »

Hereforthecrazyshow
19 days ago

Serious question – in light of the recent settlement with the NCAA and resulting changes to restrictions on professional athletes – is it possible that Regan Smith will be swimming for Texas despite the NCAA ruling against her eligibility?

Admin
Reply to  Hereforthecrazyshow
19 days ago

So far, none of the outcomes have created any implications that student-athletes can accept prize money from professional competitions or incentive-based contracts.

It doesn’t mean that lawsuit isn’t stacked up on the runway, or won’t be collectively-bargained (though not sure why basketball and football players who hold all the power here would care about that). But so far, that rule hasn’t changed.

Hereforthecrazyshow
Reply to  Braden Keith
19 days ago

Thx for the quick reply Braden. It seems strange to me that that you can pay an athlete for performance, but they cant accept prize money. Strange times we are moving into.

Patrick
Reply to  Hereforthecrazyshow
19 days ago

Well, NIL was you paying an athlete (allegedly) because they were a big name and an advertising coup. In reality, well we know what it was – it’s pay for play.. which everyone with 14 brain cells knew was going to happen. So are you still amateur? Its a gray area.

Prize money? You’re pro. Black and white, you were literally paid for athletic performance.

Wethorn
Reply to  Patrick
19 days ago

It’s a distinction without a difference. Sure you can arbitrarily say prize money is black and white, but to what point? Paying athletes via methods 1-2-3 is ok, but method 4 is verboten? Rules around prize money may have made sense at the time, but now the context has completely changed. But it may take a few years to reconcile rules so there’s logical consistency. At least I hope that’s the eventual outcome.

Patrick
Reply to  Wethorn
19 days ago

I’m not saying I agree with it 🙂 I’m just saying the legalese probably puts NIL in gray area but it’s harder to argue winning $1K because you won a race is still amateur.

Go... Go.... Go
Reply to  Patrick
18 days ago

Wake up. NIL blew up the idea that it has any impact that an athlete “…is still amateur.”

Rick Paine
Reply to  Braden Keith
19 days ago

great answer

h2olover
Reply to  Braden Keith
19 days ago

Braden, You may think that “pay for play” is a clear cut issue. But I think it’s pretty obviuos that any number of attorney’s would be happy to sue the NCAA over this issue, and how do you think the NCAA is feeling about another lawsuit. The House case is ushering in direct payments from schools to their athletes. While football and basketball players will get the higher payments (and larger and more complex tax liabilities, especially if they are deemed employees), they can thank a swimmer for bringing this about.

Trials Countdown
Reply to  h2olover
19 days ago

It is a clear difference. Pay for performance is professional. The recent agreement allows for schools to pay athletes for their value. Unfortunately only football, basketball, baseball, wrestling and volleyball generate “profit “ at more than a couple of schools I can’t think of any schools generating a profit in swimming. This makes it very difficult to claim any damages. It is much more likely that funding for swimming and other Olympic sports will decrease, resulting in scholarship reductions and outright program cancellations. All of the changes have been brought about because of football and basketball—follow the money.

Ranger Coach
Reply to  Trials Countdown
18 days ago

Lacrosse generates profit at some universities on the East Coast.

Old Sprinter
Reply to  Ranger Coach
17 days ago

Not saying you are wrong. but how? Cant imagine ticket sales amount for much ( except NCAA playoffs). Maybe they get there from donations?

some ESPN money?

Admin
Reply to  h2olover
18 days ago

I never said it was a clear cut issue.

I chose my words carefully. So far, that lawsuit hasn’t happened. In fact, explicitly I said “It doesn’t mean the lawsuit isn’t stacked up on the runway.”

Sometimes I wonder about some of y’all lol.

Lion Swim
19 days ago

Heard on deck at Canadian Trials that Ilya plans to be at texas in the fall, didn’t make sense financially for him to make the move immediately (committed to a rent agreement in Tempe through the summer).

bevo’s horns
Reply to  Lion Swim
19 days ago

Was it reported that he entered the transfer portal? When does that deadline end?

Admin
Reply to  bevo’s horns
19 days ago

He is not in the portal, and his 30 days from when Herbie was named head coach is up.

So, I don’t really think it’s possible for him to transfer next season at this point, unless they found some other loophole.

Andrew
Reply to  Braden Keith
19 days ago

Last time I checked, Marsh is still on the Cal staff so Kharun won’t be joining any team other than Cal under any loopholes

Admin
Reply to  Andrew
19 days ago

Lol had to reach reallllllyyy far for this one.

Geo
Reply to  Braden Keith
18 days ago

Branden can you get someone to write an article on Andrew’s beef with Cal! This need’s to be studied and published 😀

DrSwimPhil
Reply to  Braden Keith
19 days ago

There’s one other “loophole”: if a student-athlete’s scholarship is reduced in any way, they can enter the portal outside the window.

Theoretically he could have that happen (I assume in some sort of understood deal with Behm/Bowman).

Admin
Reply to  DrSwimPhil
19 days ago

True. I can’t imagine why Behm would reduce his scholarship at this point, though (unless Ilya asked for it so he could enter the portal).

Go... Go.... Go
Reply to  Braden Keith
18 days ago

You guys all seem to be accepting Lion Swim’s assertion Ilya is looking to head to Austin.

Probably need to base on more than “heard on a deck 2000 miles from home pool.”

Admin
Reply to  Go... Go.... Go
18 days ago

What part of my responses indicate I’m accepting his assertion?

The one where I said it didn’t make sense? Or the other one where I said it didn’t make sense?

long ago polo
Reply to  Braden Keith
17 days ago

Well it was admittedly directly under your comment, but the “you guys” was intended to apply to a broader portion of the commentariat than just BK.

bobthebuilderrocks
Reply to  Lion Swim
18 days ago

I’m hoping this is as legit as that Rex Maurer comment turned out to be.

Sceptic
Reply to  Lion Swim
16 days ago

Why would Ilya postpone his move/training with Bowman until the fall just because of rent if his Olympic performance is at stake?! Few hundred $$$ in exchange for solver/bronze in Paris?

Last edited 16 days ago by Sceptic
Andrew
19 days ago

Sarkany should go back to Hungary, it’s clearly where he does his best work (see his results this year)

About Riley Overend

Riley is an associate editor interested in the stories taking place outside of the pool just as much as the drama between the lane lines. A 2019 graduate of Boston College, he arrived at SwimSwam in April of 2022 after three years as a sports reporter and sports editor at newspapers …

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