The Michigan Wolverines have brought in reinforcements to support first-year diving coach Mike Hilde in the form of former head coach Dick Kimball, who will return from a four-year hiatus as a volunteer diving coach for the Wolverines.
Kimball is the definition of University of Michigan diving. He was the program’s head coach from 1960-2002, and spent 8 seasons as a volunteer assistant from 2003-2010. In total, that puts 50 years with the Wolverines on his resume, and that’s just as a coach.
Kimball’s resume is a long one and includes earning the 1984 NCAA Diving Coach of the Year award for both men and women, and the 1988 NCAA Diving Coach of the Year award for just women. He coached 9 Olympic medal winners, including athletes that tallied 5 gold medals. He was personally on the American Olympic staffs in 1964, 1980, 1984, 1988, 1992, and foreign staffs in 1968 and 1996.
Prior to coaching there, he was a three-time NCAA Champion diver for Michigan as part of three consecutive national team championships. He was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame and Michigan Hall of Honor in 1985, and that was some 17 years before officially retiring as the program’s head coach.
Even after ceasing his roll as a volunteer assistant in 2010, Kimball remained an active face on deck at the Canham Natatorium. Last September, at 78-years old, he rode a bike off of the 10-meter platform at Michigan’s Water Carnival.
Hilde was hired this summer from the Mission Viejo diving program and was a part of the USA staff at the FINA World Junior Championships in Russia in September. Former head coach KZ Li resigned in April and has since taken over the diving program at Louisville.