U.S. Open Qualifier John Butler Commits To UChicago (2024)

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John Butler of Cedar Falls, Iowa, has announced his commitment to further his education and swimming career at the University of Chicago this upcoming fall. Butler, a USA Swimming Scholastic All-American, is a current senior at Cedar Falls High School. 

I’m extremely excited to announce my commitment to swim and study at the University of Chicago! Thank you to everyone who has helped me along the way. I knew UChicago was a great place for me both academically and in swimming, and I can’t wait to represent the maroons in the fall of 2024!”

Butler, who trains and competes year-round with the Black Hawk Area Swim Team, focuses on sprint to mid-distance freestyle and backstroke. He’s currently a Winter Juniors qualifier in the 200 free and a U.S. Open qualifier in the 200 back, as well as owns Futures cuts in the 50 free, 100 free, 100 back, and 500. 

Butler recently competed at Speedo Sectionals in his home state of Iowa. He recorded his best finish of the meet in the 200m backstroke at 5th with a 2:07.65, which is within half a second of his best time from Futures. He hit personal bests in the 100m free and 400m with times of 53.28 and 4:13.70, respectively.

He capped off his short course season this spring at the Iowa Swimming Short Course Championships. Highlighting his meet was the 200 back, where he took 1st in a best time of 1:46.78. He was also the runner-up finisher in the 100 back (49.52) and 500 (3:34.49), also hitting best times in both.

Just prior to the Iowa Swimming Championships, Butler represented his high school at the Iowa High School State Championships. There, he took home silver in the 200 free in a best time of 1:38:48, as well as was 3rd in the 100 free (45.45).

Top SCY Times

  • 50 free – 20.97
  • 100 free – 45.18
  • 200 free – 1:38.48
  • 500 free – 4:34.49
  • 100 back – 49.52
  • 200 back – 1:46.78

The Maroons took 3rd as a team at both the University Athletic Association (UAA) Championships and NCAA Division III Championships. The team is led by head coach Jason Weber, who has been at the helm of the program for 18 years.

Butler is a huge pick-up for UChicago, as his best time in the 200 freestyle and 200 backstroke would have made him an A-finalist at this year’s conference meet. Leading the way for the team in the 200 free with a runner-up finish was Kyle Garcia (1:38.88), while Garrett Clasen was the Maroons’ lone finalist in the 200 back with a 13th place finish (1:50.30). 

Butler joins Christopher Mo, Alex Schwartz, and Andrew Kim in UChicago’s incoming class next fall. 

If you have a commitment to report, please send an email with a photo (landscape, or horizontal, looks best) and a quote to [email protected].

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1 month ago

Welcome to the Maroons!!!

Big Mac
1 month ago

Look at all the Maroons out there!

Loved all 4 years swimming for Kevin.

Anyone who thinks Coach Jason has not revolutionized things is smokin rocks. Team is so good now it is hard to believe.

Bartlett named after a gentleman who died during construction of the gym. Always heard it was built in the hopes that Chicago would host 1904 Olympics. 30 years later my turns are still better than most, and better than my swimming.

1 month ago

The kid is going to be a terrific 200 freestyle and 200 backstroke contributor to an already good team. Could also help their 400 freestyle relay if he knocks off a little time in his 100 (strength work will help). Every D3 team in the country would love to have him. UAA Swim Fan is a sour grapes artist with an agenda that motivates him/her to cast dispersion towards Chicago. Not cool.

1 month ago

Jason just needs the young man to go 4:24 in the 500 and 15:10 in the mile by the D3 nationals next year.

UAA Swimfan
Reply to  Applesandoranges
1 month ago

Check the track record of Chicago distance swimmers…

Reply to  UAA Swimfan
1 month ago

first off, congrats to this young man! UChicago is a prestigious school with ever declining admission rates, and home to a swim program that’s been consistently competitive in the top 10 on both the women’s and men’s sides, and rising for over a decade now.

say what you will about Chicago’s distance flaws, but time and time again Weber has had this team rise up the national ranks. John might or might not develop into being a distance staple, but he could compete for the 200 free title with another big drop or two, and he’s filling in some holes for that team next year on the backstrokes.

Reply to  monkeyseemonkeydoodoo
1 month ago

Jason is a great coach. I remember the two 20 yard pools that we trained in.

Michael LeMay
Reply to  applesandoranges
1 month ago

All our pool orientations were and are 25 yards.

Reply to  Michael LeMay
1 month ago

Well they are now, but some of us are old enough to remember swimming in the 20-yard pool at Ida Noyes.

Reply to  CBswim22
1 month ago

I liked the pool in Ida Noyes. It’s where the LCB was.

Reply to  Michael LeMay
1 month ago

Michael, back in the day UofC didn’t have a 25 yard or 50m pool. There were two 20 yard pools on campus; the one we trained in was in Bartlett Gym. Look it up.

Reply to  applesandoranges
1 month ago

20 yard pools were popular in that area back in the day. Mount Carmel High School still has a 20 yard pool in the basement. Sometimes we got 25 yard training at the SouthSide Y, but mostly we were in the basement pool at school.