Three-Time NCAA Champion Shaine Casas Reveals Plans To Turn Pro

Three-time NCAA champion Shaine Casas is planning on turning professional.

Casas, who has spent the last three seasons competing in the NCAA with the Texas A&M Aggies, told SwimSwam on Friday that although nothing is completely set in stone, he has designs on turning pro in the near future, meaning his time competing collegiately is most likely done.

Casas entered the NCAA transfer portal in late August, signalling his desire to move on from Texas A&M after three seasons with the team. At the time, a source indicated Casas was planning on joining the University of Texas, though nothing was confirmed.

On Friday, Casas said that it’s currently being arranged for him to join the training group in Austin, so it appears he’ll join the pro group at Texas with coach Eddie Reese.

The 21-year-old was dominant last season during his junior year in College Station, winning the men’s 100 backstroke, 200 backstroke and 200 individual medley at the 2021 NCAA Championships.

A native of McAllen, TX., Casas also won a pair of individual SEC titles last season in the 200 back and 200 IM. In short course yards, he’s currently the second-fastest swimmer of all-time in the 200 back (1:35.75), third in the 200 IM (1:38.95), fourth in the 100 back (43.87), sixth in the 200 fly (1:38.69) and eighth in the 200 free (1:30.59).

After winning the 2019 U.S. National title in the men’s 100 backstroke (LCM), Casas placed third in the event at the Olympic Trials this past summer, clocking a time of 52.76 to finish less than three-tenths shy of a berth on the U.S. Olympic team. He also placed sixth in the 200 back after entering the meet seeded second and third in the 100 and 200 back, respectively.

Casas will be providing SwimSwam with a statement shortly.

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Shaddy419
29 days ago

Well this took a turn

Bobthebuilderrocks
29 days ago

Wtf

Ledecky will go under 8 minutes in the 800
29 days ago

IMO it’s a bad move

He’s well known by the swim community but he’s not an Olympian, so he doesn’t have much publicity and won’t get that many endorsements besides maybe a suit deal and ISL isn’t gonna do much considering the state of the league right now

I think it’s better for him to develop himself more as a swimming in college and not get anymore DUIs

Qqq

Agreed, as in the sports market he’s a nobody – 3,416 IG followers does not a brand make and no Olympics means no broader visibility or relevance (and fitter faster seems to require at least a relay medal) – and its not like by staying in school he would be foregoing NFL money.

NC Fan

College isn’t for everyone. Hopefully he gets his degree since he has at least 2 1/2 years of school but many 21 year olds have to try different things to figure it out. Superstar athletes aren’t exempt from that. From interviews he seems more of an individual rather than team culture guy so will be interesting to see him in that super strong Texas culture. Amazing talent so fingers crossed for him.

There's no doubt that he's tightening up

More specifically, he’s well known by the American swim community.

I don’t think too many people outside the US would really know about him. NCAAs/yards in general don’t really register outside the US.

I know his LCM best times are great, but he’s suffered a bit from the US backstroke depth — Casas hasn’t competed internationally at any level right?

Yur ski

thankfully it’s not you making the decision young blood

Eric the eel > Phelps
29 days ago

Casas for LA Current?

2Fat4Speed
29 days ago

Turning Pro? Who outside of us swim nerds know of him? Don’t get me wrong, his talent is incredible, I just don’t know what money there is for him. Suit deal, ISL, and FINA World Cup meets don’t seem like exciting options if that is all you have going for you at the moment.

ProtectAthletes
Reply to  2Fat4Speed
29 days ago

Not everyone is driven by $$, or attaining that
$$ immediately. ISL looks super fun and you can make a typical year’s salary in a few weekends. Plus a solid suit deal? He’ll be at least fine financially.

I’m excited for him for sure. It’s cool to see folks taking risks and trying new ways to make it in swimming. I think he’ll do well at Texas and meet folks’ standard measuring stick of LC success.

Last edited 29 days ago by ProtectAthletes
swimfast
Reply to  2Fat4Speed
29 days ago

Honestly, he is really good at short course. and hes on the brink of making the A team long course. I think some swimmers declare going pro after they’ve tried out college swimming, and decided it’s just not for them. They turn pro at the thought of *possibly making money every time they swim…it could be a totally different motivator. Maybe team sport wasn’t a motivation for him.

the thing is, he’s done it. he has an experienced opinion about college swimming, so it’s now his choice whether to continue. I definitely don’t support those who go pro before even trying it out. Unless you’re a teenage superstar. (no shade toward MA, but breaking a bunch of NAGs doesn’t make… Read more »

Last edited 29 days ago by swimfast
Togger
29 days ago

Unusual to see someone going to Texas just as a pro without having swum there collegiately, only other example I can think of recently is Gunnar Bentz.

Bobthebuilderrocks
Reply to  Togger
29 days ago

Bryce Bohman, who obviously isn’t one the same plane as the aforementioned, but still.

Ghost
Reply to  Togger
29 days ago

Guy from harvard

Togger
Reply to  Ghost
29 days ago

Farris still isn’t pro is he? He’s showing on the Harvard roster for this year.

Last edited 29 days ago by Togger
Thomas
Reply to  Togger
29 days ago

He has trained there in the summers in the past – that is all

Togger
Reply to  Thomas
29 days ago

True, think he did the whole year 2019/20, but there’s an incentive there for Texas of potentially persuading him to transfer into the college squad.

Texas doesn’t seem to run a “recruiting” pro group like Indiana, Cal, Team Elite and the like, it’s usually just Texas grads staying on as pros.

HJones
Reply to  Togger
29 days ago

Most of the Texas pro group has been Texas grads. You’d see guys like Andrew Wilson and Dean Farris come train with them during redshirt years, but the only non-Texas alum who I can think of who was a full member of the Texas post-grad group was Bentz.

It’s more often that Texas swimmers leave after graduation if they plan to continue swimming. Conger and Schooling left, though I wouldn’t say Conger would’ve been welcome to continue with the pro group.

Murica
Reply to  HJones
29 days ago

What did conger do?

Riccardo
Reply to  Togger
29 days ago

I don’t think Cal has had anyone in their pro group that didn’t swim for Cal. It even suggests as much on the swimming website. At least not the men’s team.

HJones
Reply to  Riccardo
29 days ago

I believe @Coleman Hodges’s brother, Wyatt, swam with their pro group while he was a grad student at Cal, yet he didn’t study/swim there as an undergad (he went to Purdue). This is the only example I know of.

Swimmer
Reply to  Togger
29 days ago

Every single Cal pro swimmer swam for the team.

Swimmer Steve
Reply to  Togger
29 days ago

Joe Daniels from West Point was allowed to train there while with the Army’s WCAP, injuries ended his career but he trained there for a while.

Virtus
Reply to  Togger
29 days ago

Andrew Wilson was there

SWIMGUY12345
Reply to  Virtus
29 days ago

When did Wilson swim for with Cal’s group for any substantial amount of time? He trained at Texas then UGA post-grad.

Chas E
29 days ago

I like the move to pro swimming. He has nothing more to prove at the collegiate level. NCAA swimming will be done soon enough anyway.

Ledecky will go under 8 minutes in the 800
Reply to  Chas E
29 days ago

You do realize that there are thousands of athletes competing in NCAA swim right now and it’s also the top level of competition for the 90% of swimmers that don’t make the national team

Chas E

What does that have to do with Shane? He’s on the national team and could win almost any event at NCAA’s.

Ledecky will go under 8 minutes in the 800
Reply to  Chas E
29 days ago

Well you said NCAA swimming would be done soon enough so I assumed you were talking about the program in general

Snarky
Reply to  Chas E
29 days ago

He ain’t thaaaaat good. Plus, seems like he has some big time growing up to do. Going pro for isn’t going to solve that issue.

chungus
Reply to  Snarky
28 days ago

Ain’t that good ???? he’s top ten in almost every event. he’s arguably one of the greatest college swimmers of all time.

Chad
Reply to  Snarky
28 days ago

Has he had any behavior issues in the past? This is the first I’ve heard of anything.

yardfan
Reply to  Chas E
29 days ago

How about getting a degree while swimming for the Longhorns and give to the team.

samulih
Reply to  Chas E
29 days ago

they are student-athletes? so one should also get that student part done.

Gentle Boy 38
29 days ago

He should return to A&M to be honest. They have a great program and i don’t know why he left. Great group of guys, idk that’s just me

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Gentle Boy 38
29 days ago

I assume there are reasons for why he left that are a bit more detailed than the comment section saying, “he swam good there, he should go back.”

Horninco
Reply to  Gentle Boy 38
29 days ago

Have you been to college station? Couldn’t leave fast enough if it were me.

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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