Ed Brennan Retiring From Full-Time Coaching After 40 Years At Tampa

Longtime University of Tampa swim coach Ed Brennan will retire from his full-time role this year, though he’ll remain coaching part-time.

Brennan was the head swimming coach for the Tampa Spartans from 1980 through 2016. In 2016, he stepped back to an assisting role on the men’s side, and did the same on the women’s side in 2018, assisting Jimi Kiner, now the head coach for both men and women. Brennan will remain with the programs, but only in a part-time role, the school says.

Brennan coached at Columbia Prep School in New York in the mid-seventies, and coached at Fordham University at the college level before taking over the Tampa program 40 years ago.

Tampa competes in the NCAA’s Division II and the Sunshine State Conference (SSC). In 2020, the Tampa men won their first-ever conference title and the women finished second.


The full Tampa press release is below:

TAMPA, Fla. – Ed Brennan, who began his career as the head swimming coach at the University of Tampa in 1980, has retired from his role as a full-time coach for the Spartans. The legendary coach will continue with the Spartans in a part-time role.

Brennan built the Spartan swimming program into a national powerhouse, leading his teams to more All-Americans and NCAA National Championships appearances than any other Spartan program. In total, Brennan coached 32 national championships by Spartan individuals and relay teams at the NCAA Championships.

Serving as the head men’s coach until 2016 and women’s coach until 2018, Brennan successfully led the Spartan program to the Sunshine State Conference as his women’s squad captured three of the first four league titles. On the national level, his men’s teams finished in the national top-10 a total of 20 times with a best finish of third at the 1985 championships. His women’s teams were equally as successful as they garnered 14 top-10 finishes and were the national runner-up in 1986-88.

Prior to joining the Sunshine State Conference, Brennan led his women’s team to a 2009 Bluegrass Conference championship. In 2003, the Spartan men won the New South Conference championship for the first time with Brennan earning New South Coach of the Year honors.

Brennan began his career at Columbia Prep School in New York City. While there he compiled a 78-23 record over nine years which included an undefeated season in 1974-75. He then moved on to Fordham University, where took an 0-10 team to a 10-0 finish the next year, the school’s only undefeated season in 50 years of competition, earning Brennan conference Coach-of-the-Year honors in 1979.

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Dan Gerard
2 years ago

Eddie, congratulations!! Forty years is an amazing accomplishment!! I still have many memories from the days at Columbia Prep, Brooklyn College and Rose Hill. Evo, evo danga danga!! Best wishes to you and your family.

Dan Gerard

Seth Huston
2 years ago

King Ed, not only a great coach, great mentor but a total straight shooter. The King always new what buttons to push, incredibly creative, innovative, inspiring and shared his many passions if you are a willing student. Too many stories to share, but let me just say Shaving a T into his chest and painting it red, then leading a team cheer “put it in a hefty” on the final night of NCAA’s was pure gold, literally 1650 free outside lane 200 fly and shared first sub 3:00 400 free relay at DIi in 1985 from a gaggle of guys that collectively could not have gone under 3:12 before arrival at Tampa. Enjoy your part time coaching and travel King!

2 years ago

Class Act!

2 years ago

Hey Ed – I thought you were tough? Throwing in the towel full-time after a mere 40 years??? Congrats we all hope you love semi-retirement!

Larry VanWagner
2 years ago

A well deserved CONGRATULATIONS!

Ray Bosse
Reply to  Larry VanWagner
2 years ago

Congratulations Ed!
My most memorable Ed Brennan story…We (Army) were sitting next to Tampa at the 1989 NCAA Div II Championships at Buffalo (Army’s women were then Div II). The singer doing the National Anthem before finals started with a very slow tempo and ended up getting confused ,repeating verses, and finally just sang “and the home of the brave” to end it. Ed turned to me and said, “My God, even Jimmy Hendrix got it right at Woodstock and he was stoned.”
I never did ask Ed if he was there!

Ray Bosse

About Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson

Jared Anderson swam for nearly twenty years. Then, Jared Anderson stopped swimming and started writing about swimming. He's not sick of swimming yet. Swimming might be sick of him, though. Jared was a YMCA and high school swimmer in northern Minnesota, and spent his college years swimming breaststroke and occasionally pretending …

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