Doak Finch, UVA Legend, Hired as New Penn State Assistant

The Tim Murphy era is underway in State College, Pennsylvania, and he has made his first assistant coaching hire as the head coach of the Penn State men’s and women’s teams.

Doak Finch is a former assistant coach at his alma mater the University of Virginia, another program that hired a new head coach this summer. He graduated from UVA in 2000, and after one year as a volunteer assistant, spent the next 11 seasons as a full-time coach for the Cavaliers. In short: this is Finch’s first swimming foray in a long time outside of Charlottesville.

The two-time Virginia team captain was named a member of Virginia’s all-time 50th anniversary team in 2002, and was an 11-time NCAA All-American as a butterflier and IM’er. Among other honors in his career were as the 1997 ACC Rookie of the Year and 1998 ACC Swimming Championships swimmer of the meet. He completed a clean sweep of four 400 IM titles at the ACC Championships, making him just the 14th swimmer in the conference’s history to do so in any event.

He was also a member of the 1999 World University Games team, and final’ed in the 200 fly at the 2000 Olympic Trials.

Murphy takes over Penn State in the 2013-2014 season after 15 years at Harvard.

Liz McMillan, who has been with Penn State for 6 years, is currently still listed on Penn State’s coaching staff as well, though we were unable to officially confirm that she has been retained on Wednesday evening.

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7 years ago

i’m glad doak got a job! when last i talked to him i made the mistake of asking “how are you doing?” the answer: not too well, man, not too well. in regards to the whole fiasco in charlottesville. Penn state will be a great place for you, coach doak, and i hope next time we talk you’re doing a lot better!

EC Swim Champ
7 years ago

Is Doak the assistant coach or associate head coach?

Wahoo Strong
7 years ago

Congratulations to Doak! He will be missed at UVa, but we hope this change will be very positive for this admired coach.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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