Describe the qualities that your program is looking for in a potential student-athlete?
We look for engaged and curious student athletes who have a desire to excel both in the classroom and the pool. Our team is built upon the four pillars of integrity, commitment, ethic and fun.
We want athletes who have integrity. They are honest in thought and action. They have courage to do the right thing in all circumstances. They tell the truth, treat others with respect, are accountable to their teammates, and show class in all their actions.
We want committed athletes. They show a pledge to their teammates to be the best in everything they do. They are invested in becoming a part of the whole and strengthening our bond as a team to ensure our success in everything we do.
We want student athletes with a tremendous work ethic. Everything our student athletes do is done with all the energy they have to offer. We want to know as a unit that everything we do as group is done with our absolute best effort.
We also want student athletes who have fun every day. We want them to enjoy the process as much or more than the end of the season outcome.
I believe building our team around these pillars and around athletes who embrace these pillars will give us a strong foundation to place our successes and will make any failure bearable.
Could you give us an example of a current or former player who exceeded your expectations, highlighting the reasons that player excelled?
I have had several players who have exceeded my expectations in different ways. Some are athletes who were on the brink of leaving the sport but stayed, worked hard, and had the best season of their careers. Others have been burnt out, swimming 9 practices a week since they were 8, and after taking a different approach, trying some new events, and reinventing themselves they found a new love for the sport they didn’t know they still had. My favorite type of athlete is the raw untrained talent. They might have only swum for a summer team a couple months each year, or they’ve only done high school for a year or two. They’re strong, dedicated and hungry to be the best they can be. In all theses instances I find that the hunger and drive to continue to improve and better themselves is what made each of them great and able to achieve their own goals. I’ve also found that student athletes who are able to find an even balance between their sport, academics and social life tend to be the most successful in all aspects.