The University of Evansville has hired Brent Noble of Wabash College to be the new head coach of the combined swim and dive program.
Noble had spent five seasons with Wabash of the NCAA’s Division III and the NCAC. He makes the jump to Evansville’s Division I program, with the men competing in the Mid-American Conference (MAC) and the women in the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC).
Noble replaces Rickey Perkins, who left Evansville, Indiana to take over as the new head coach at Bowling Green State University. He had led Evansville since 2002.
You can read Evansville’s full press release below:
EVANSVILLE, Ind. – University of Evansville Director of Athletics Mark Spencer has announced the hiring of Brent Noble as the Head Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving Coach. Noble joins the Purple Aces program from Wabash College where he oversaw his student-athletes break 22 out of 23 school records in his five seasons at the helm.
“Throughout our search process, it became evident that Brent Noble had all of the attributes that we were looking for in our new head coach,” Spencer said. “Brent is a quality individual who brings a strong pedigree in the Midwest. He has the ability to bring out the best in student-athletes both in the classroom and in the pool. We are excited to welcome him to the Purple Aces family.
Noble has spent the last five seasons as the Head Swimming and Diving Coach at Wabash College and is coming off of a stellar campaign that saw the Little Giants take fourth place at the North Coast Athletic Conference Swimming and Diving Championships. Finishing with 1,154 points, his squad reached the 1,000-point plateau for the fourth time in school history. It was also the highest tally in the history of the Wabash program. Aaron Embree and Hunter Jones received Scholar All-America Honorable Mention Recognition while the team earned Scholar-All-America Team accolades in the spring.
“It’s clear that this is a special group of men and women, and I’m very excited to be their next leader,” Noble said. “Evansville combines a rigorous academic environment that I can feel very good about recruiting to with the opportunity to compete in Division I athletics, and I feel like that is a really great fit for me at this point in my coaching career.”
“I am very thankful to Mark Spencer for the opportunity, and I’m eager to get to work and help to build this program and make the UE community proud.”
His Little Giant swimming and diving team placed fifth at the 2017 NCAC Championships. Wabash captured two All-NCAC honors in one- and three-meter diving. Aaron Embree qualified for the second consecutive year for the NCAA Diving Regional.
Wabash placed fourth at the 2016 NCAC Championships, missing the 1,000-point mark by half a point with a score of 999.5. Zechariah Banks captured individual titles in the 100- and 200-yard breaststroke and moved on the 2016 NCAA DIII Championship Meet. Banks captured fifth-place finishes in both events at nationals to earn All-America honors.
His Little Giants finished fourth at the 2015 North Coast Athletic Conference Swimming and Diving Championships with a total of 1,041 points to earn Noble NCAC Men’s Coach of the Year honors. The Little Giants topped the 1,000-point mark for the first time since 2008 and became the first team to finish fourth with more than 1,000 points. Wabash swimmers set 14 new school records at the 2015 championships and produced six All-NCAC performances, including an individual NCAC victory by Jack Belford in the 500 freestyle.
Six Wabash swimmers — Carter Adams, Zechariah Banks, Jack Belford, Jake Childress, Elliot Johns, and Chris McGue — qualified for the 2015 NCAA Division III National Championship meet in Texas, the most qualifiers since the Little Giants sent nine to the national meet in 1991. Wabash finished the 2014-15 season with a 5-2 dual-meet record, including a 162-129 home victory over arch-rival DePauw University.
He guided the Little Giants to a successful outing at the 2014 NCAC Swimming and Diving Championships, finishing fourth in the highly-competitive league. The Little Giants sent six swimmers to the “A” finals of the meet with a third-place finish in the 400-yard medley relay. Noble’s squad posted 10 school records during the season and 11 NCAA provisional qualifying times.
The youngest head swimming coach in NCAA Division I, he tripled the size of the Sacred Heart roster in his time with the school in 2012-13. His swimmers set nine new school records and every member of the team turned in at least two lifetime-best results in their primary events. His team also excelled in the classroom, earning Scholar All-America team honors by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America.
He earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Eastern Illinois University in 2009, where he competed for four years as a member of the Panthers’ swimming team. He earned academic all-conference honors all four years, and was part of the winning 800-meter relay team at the 2007 Mid-Continent Conference Championships, and made 15 finals appearances in conference championship events throughout his career. Noble is still listed on the top-ten list at Eastern Illinois in the 200- and 400-yard individual medley.
A graduate of Terre Haute South High School in Indiana, he earned varsity letters as a member of the swimming and cross country teams. He is expected to earn a Master’s of Science in Kinesiology from Indiana University in December and has studied swim training and techniques at the Indiana University Counsilman Center for the Science of Swimming in addition to his own research to help maximize potential in student-athletes.
His first college coaching experience came when he joined the DePauw University coaching staff in 2010 as an assistant for the men’s program. He designed season and weekly training and workout plans, which helped send five swimmers to the NCAA Division III National Championship meet. Noble was hired as a sprint coach for the men’s and women’s teams at East Carolina University in 2011, where his athletes posted seven school records, three freshmen records, and 14 new individual times on the all-time top-10 list. His swimmers also earned five all-conference selections and produced four NCAA Division I “B” cuts.