University of Denver Suspends 38 Swimmers & Divers for Attending “Large Party”

The University of Denver has suspended 38 members of the men’s and women’s swimming & diving team for attending a “large off-campus party,” according to a letter sent to the student body and other stakeholders.

The announcement comes 5 days after the school upgraded its alert level on campus.

As a result of the violations, the 38 athletes are suspended from participating in team activities through the rest of the fall quarter after attending the party in violation of local and state health restrictions as well as university policies that limit gatherings to 10 people, with all participants required to wear face coverings and maintain social distancing. The fall quarter runs through November 20.

They will also have to go through the “Student Rights and Responsibilities (SRR) process for disciplinary action, which may include interim academic suspension for the fall quarter pending the outcome of the SRR process.”

All 38 student-athletes will also have to undergo new coronavirus tests and will have their movement restricted until those tests are received.

“We understand that what we are asking all of our students to do — to change how they socialize and connect with their peers — is difficult,” the letter, signed by chancellor Jeremy Haefner and athletics chancellor Karlton Creech. “The realities of the COVID-19 pandemic are putting significant pressure on all of us. We also believe our students can rise to this challenge the way generations of young people have risen in the past to the unique challenges of their own time. Indeed, we are proud that the vast majority of our students are meeting this challenge by following the protocols and still having a meaningful social experience in a face-to-face manner.”

The school has not released names of those who have been suspended. The team has 26 male and 28 female swimmers listed on their 2020-2021 roster, though it’s not clear how many of those are on campus.

The school has recorded 3 previous outbreaks of coronavirus: one in a residence hall, one within the school’s gymnastics team, and one within the school’s athletics center.

The Denver Pioneers say that the start of their 2020-2021 swimming & diving season has been delayed until January of 2021.

Last season, the Denver men and women swept the Summit League titles in Division I for the 7th-straight year. The two programs have combined to win 152 of the last 154 event titles in the Summit League. The two exceptions were the 2020 men’s 100 IM, in which the Pioneers didn’t have an entry, and a disqualified relay in 2019.

Last season, Denver qualified 3 swimmers individually for the men’s NCAA Championship meet, which was ultimately canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic: Cameron Auchinachie, Sid Farber, and Adriel Sanes. All 3 were juniors.

The school was also qualified to swim 4 relays at the NCAA Championships.

The Colorado Department of Public Health distributed a report this week that says there are 39 active COVID-19 outbreaks in the state associated with schools, including 1,503 confirmed student cases at the University of Colorado Boulder.

So far, only 15 students have tested positive at the University of Denver.

Nationally, cases have begun to rise again after hitting a peak in early September, with 44,000 new cases reported on Tuesday. Much of this rise is attributed to the reopening of schools, where because of their age, students are generally at lower risk for, but not immune from, severe complications from COVID-19.

Colorado hit a new record high of 761 new confirmed cases in one day last week, and has seen a 50% increase in new daily cases over the last 2 weeks. Deaths continue to decrease in the state, however.

Multiple colleges have suspended, or even expelled, students for violations of coronavirus rules. Most recently, Purdue this week suspended 13 student-athletes for an on-campus party, though the school did not identify which teams those student-athletes were members of.

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2 years ago

Probably the next NCAA swim program to be cut…

Omg UDenver loses swimmers....
2 years ago

Omg uDenver loses 38 swimmers, who’s gonna notice? They could lose their whole swim team without telling anyone and no one would notice. Many D3 and D2 programs are more popular than them.

Bonny Brook
Reply to  Omg UDenver loses swimmers....
2 years ago

Looks like you noticed.

Reply to  Bonny Brook
2 years ago

Don’t you just love the types that declare how some story isn’t worth their time yet can’t help commenting on it?

Oh, the Internet.

Reply to  Omg UDenver loses swimmers....
2 years ago

Hmmm… so a team with several all Americans and some of the best relays in the ncaa gets cut and the first thing you say is who cares? Who cares if collegiate swimming in general even continues right? Suck it dude

Jay Edmunds
2 years ago

Instead of rushing to judgement, how about getting the facts:

It was a swim team party only with no outside attendance. The same people that have been training together since
August 1st. They swim together, workout together, eat together, and most of them live together. They stay within the swim team bubble. It was not a raging party. It was an outdoor BBQ they watched the Denver Nuggets. The cops weren’t called and there were no arrests. And, to my knowledge all 38 kids tested have tested negative to the required COVID test after they were suspended.

They are all good kids with high GPA’s, and they are getting a bum rap.

As a side note, they got a… Read more »

2 years ago

Am i the only one who finds it odd that they compete in the Summit League winning 152 of 154 conference titles AND not having any duals against conference teams last year. to me, that is the big shocker coming out of this article.

Reply to  Denny
2 years ago

S/O DU Men’s Basketball for sucking so bad they force most of our other teams to stay in the Summit League.

Former Big10
Reply to  Denny
2 years ago

Why would you want to swim against teams you know you will beat, handily? Good for DU, and their AD, on recognizing the need for better competition. Too many coaches get locked into the same meet schedule every year, it’s dull and boring.

2 years ago

Will someone please explain to me the difference between the University letting 54 swimmers in total (plus coaching staff) train together every day, and 38 of those SAME athletes have a party off campus in terms of COVID risk? Its fine when they are in the gym, but not on someone’s house? It seems like DU gets real lenient when it suits them, and suddenly strict when they need a scapegoat.

As a swimmer who went through this program and dedicated 4 years of my life to excellence both in the pool and in the classroom, it was hard enough to stay focused and motivated when there WAS a season to be training for. I can’t even imagine how… Read more »

Reply to  ExDUSwimmer
2 years ago

Highly doubt all 54 are training together at one time. Teams I am familiar with are still at 1 or 2 swimmers per lane.

Reply to  Swimfan5
2 years ago

They are. 3 per lane, 2 on one side, 1 on the other.

2 years ago


2 years ago

Why not give these swimmers a chance to express themselves? None of them were interviewed by the school before all of this was released to the press. I understand they broke the rules but these articles make it sounds like they attended a large party, when all they did was gather outside with their teammates. There should be consequences, but getting suspended look a bit extreme to me.

2 years ago

Huh maybe we should let kids swim so they don’t have nothing to do but party

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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