The University of California men’s head coach Dave Durden has been honored as the 2016 Coach of the Year by the American Swimming Coaches Association. Durden is a four-time winner of the NCAA Coach of the Year award and a member of the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team coaching staff.
Durden was chosen for the award after being named a finalist alongside Bob Bowman, Bruce Gemmell, Greg Meehan, Ray Looze, and Dave Marsh.
This summer, Durden put five swimmers from California Aquatics on the U.S. Olympic squad, including Tom Shields, Ryan Murphy, Nathan Adrian, Jacob Pebley, and Josh Prenot. As a result of his success, Durden was named Coach of the Meet at the 2016 U.S. Olympic Trials.
From there, Durden continued to impress as the Cal swimmers made headlines in Rio. At the Games, all five of his swimmers made it to the Olympic final in at least one of their individual races.
Durden coached Prenot, Adrian, and Murphy to Olympic medals in their respective individual events. Two of those medals were gold, as Murphy swept the 100 and 200 backstrokes in Rio. Adrian also won multiple individual medals, bringing home a bronze in both the 50 and 100 freestyles. Prenot earned his first Olympic medal with a silver in the 200 breast.
In addition to the individual successes, Durden also coached Murphy, Shields, and Adrian to a gold medal as a part of Team USA’s 400 medley relay. Murphy set the World Record on the lead off 100 back split in finals, while Adrian secured the team gold with his freestyle anchor split. Shields took over the fly leg duty for the prelims relay, earning himself a relay gold in the process.