Peter John Stevens, the Slovenian phenom who won the 50 breaststroke at the 2013 FINA World Junior Championships, has signed on to swim with the University of Tennessee Volunteers.
Stevens put up a Slovenian junior national record time of 27.74 in the 50m (long course) breaststroke this past summer to win the junior world title, shattering the World Junior Championships meet record in the process.
At the same meet, Stevens was 1:03.64 in the 100-meter breast, taking 20th overall.
Stevens told SwimSwam that his desire to swim at the Olympic level had a big impact on his college decision.
“[My goal is] being able to go to the Olympic games in Rio and Tennessee is an ideal place to achieve that,” Stevens said.
He is from Kranj, Slovenia, swimming for PK Triglav Kranj.
Stevens is a huge international pickup for Tennessee, which graduates top sprint breaststroker Renato Prono after this season. Stevens should team with Great Britain’s Ross Dibblin, who is in his freshman season with the Vols, to set up a strong group of international breaststrokers for Tennessee to build around.
Stevens will hope to follow in the footsteps of Slovenian breaststroker Damir Dugonjic, who won multiple NCAA titles in the breaststroke events for the California Golden Bears.