Sun, 21, was found to be driving without a license after an accident Sunday and detained for at least seven days, but the suspension is for being absent from school, according to The Associated Press.
“The car crash case simply forced us to announce this decision earlier than expected,” Zhejiang College of Sports vice president Zhang Yadong told the AP. “He has not been back to the school recently, and we could not reach him by phone.”
Zhang’s comments to Xinhua News Agency make it look like his legal trouble will play a role in the length of his suspension.
“First of all, he should thoroughly reflect of what he has done,” Zhang said. “Then he will have to resume systematic training. Only after a long period of training during which he can abide by the rules, can we consider to reinstate him.
“The punishment is severe but we are doing this for his own good. We hope he can always be the hero of Chinese sports instead of a sinner.”
The South China Morning Post reported Monday that the college recommended the national team suspend Sun from training, too. SwimSwam reports Sun has been banned from attending any domestic or international meet and temporarily removed from the national team roster.
A short suspension would have no effect on Sun’s major international competition. The biggest events of 2014 are the Pan Pacific Championships in August and the World Short Course Championships in December. Sun did not compete in the previous Pan Pacific Championships in 2010 or the previous World Short Course Championships in 2012.
Sun was named the top men’s swimmer at the World Championships this summer, over the likes of Ryan Lochte, after he won gold medals in the 400m, 800m and 1500m freestyles.
Sun also won the 400m and 1500m freestyles at the London Olympics.