SwimSwam Podcast: Bob Bowman Responds to SwimSwam’s ASU Redshirt Comments

On SwimSwam Podcast, we’re giving you an in-depth listen at all things swimming. Host Coleman Hodges welcomes guests and guest co-hosts alike to get perspective on our ever-changing swimming universe and break down the past, present, and future of aquatic sports.

We sat down with Bob Bowman, who recently announced that he would be redshirting Arizona State’s entire Swimming program for the 2020-21 season. Bowman was open and honest about his reasonings and was happy to answer a lot of the major questions that commenters had. What do you think about this decision? Let us know in the comments😉 Maybe Bowman will come back on.

Music: Otis McDonald


Leave a Reply

15 Comment threads
27 Thread replies
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
26 Comment authors
newest oldest most voted

Great podcast. Thanks Mel and Bob.


Good discussion guys. Not any real groundbreaking news compared to what was already reported but was good to hear in a live interview vs reading articles. 1. He doesn’t want his NCAA kids to lose 2 shots at championships 2. His teams will be better in 21-22 as a result 3. Has no idea when he’s getting his pool at ASU back 4. Using diving money (Says they are bringing diving back at some point) to help pay for the 5th years for the 20-21 seniors. 5. Pointing toward the academic opportunity of getting a masters or using a 5th year to finish up bachelors 6. They probably don’t have a lot of driveable meets, so they are on a… Read more »

….last point/question? Sorry. Should’ve asked. I probably didn’t because I don’t buy the question (which isn’t consistent with the comments, and I should’ve worked from and stayed focused on the comments on this one topic). The reason I don’t buy the last point? Bob’s track record, his corner of swimming history (re: Phelps and the deep list of elites who have all achieved great success), and 2021-22 isn’t far off, especially considering the 20-21 season will be truncated. Lastly, I know swimming, as a community, is more resilient than that. Culturally, we’ve all been conditioned to think longterm…. Personally, I’m bummed he’s redshirting the team, and I want all big programs to hold the line and push through this year… Read more »


Wondering if the ASU team will do non NCAA meets (if there are any) during the redshirt season. What is their competition plan (as far as one can make a plan at this point)?


They can’t compete as ASU or they would negate the redshirt. They could go to USA swimming events swimming unattached.


@Mel– To be clear, I think all his stars will be back. I wonder about the juniors and seniors who might not be NCAA level and start thinking ahead about life vs swimming, etc. That’s where I think you might see some not return. All individual decisions….

Was a good discussion, good listen on my walk this AM.

When I’ve had conversations with other D1 coaches about this decision, a lot of them talk about this too. For the swimmers who know that the ISL or the Olympics or the World Championships aren’t in their futures, they talk about some of those kids have jobs lined up, have other goals…if they’re on track to graduate in 4 and not go to grad school, I think you’re probably right that some will move on.

Agreed…. fair question.


I see what you’re saying Mel and I really appreciate your input. I do think that as an Olympic Gold Medalist your perspective on the sport might be a little different than the rest of us humans. I can’t help but think not about the athletes that train along the MPs, the Dressel’s, the Ledeckys, but the people who are right under that level. If you’re a Maxime Rooney, it’s easy to wait until the pool is back, you might make the Olympics. If the best results you’re likely to get are making a B or C final at conference, it’s a really, really hard sport to stay motivated for without frequent competitions. Those athletes may be pushed out of… Read more »


Favorite part was swimming laps in a pool without flags… Been there lol

About Coleman Hodges

Coleman Hodges

Coleman started his journey in the water at age 1, and although he actually has no memory of that, something must have stuck. A Missouri native, he joined the Columbia Swim Club at age 9, where he is still remembered for his stylish dragon swim trunks. After giving up on …

Read More »