Jim Brumm, the longtime water polo and swimming coach at Foothill High School in Santa Ana, Calif. announced that he will retire at the conclusion of the swimming season this spring. He retired from teaching last year.
Growing up as a swimmer, Brumm did not have water polo experience, but became one of the top water polo coaches in America, before taking the rings of the Foothill swim program.
He competed for Long Beach State in college and was coached by Jon Urbanchek. Brumm eventually joined the Foothill swimming staff, coaching the team to CIF Division 2 titles in 2017 and 2018, the same years the water polo team also won CIF titles.
Brumm spent 33 seasons as the boys water polo coach, which included seven CIF Southern Section titles, 21 league titles, more than 600 wins, and many stars including 2008 Olympic silver medalist J.W. Krumpholz.
Brumm coached the United States Junior National men’s water polo team. In 2008, Brumm was the video coordinator and scout for the United States Olympic men’s water polo team that won a silver medal at the Beijing Olympics.
Brumm officially took over the Foothill boys water polo team in 1989. By 1995, the team won its first CIF-SS Division 1 championship, which was the school’s first water polo title. He then led Foothill to another Division 1 title in 2008, and Division 2 titles in 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018, and 2019.
The CIF Southern Section is historically the deepest of the California sections, especially in water polo.
Foothill was known as a swimming powerhouse school especially in the 1970s and 1980s under Coach Tom DeLong, who holds the record for most high school swimming wins. Also in this era, Bruce Furniss, Steve Furniss, and Rod Strachan who went on to become Olympians and University of Southern California swimming stars, swam for Foothill under DeLong.
B. Furniss was also a world record holder and won gold in the 200 freestyle and 4×200 freestyle relay at the 1976 Olympics in Montreal. At the 1976 Olympics, he became the first person to break the 1:50-second barrier in his relay split (1:49.56). In the 200 freestyle, he led an American podium sweep with John Naber and Jim Montgomery.
S. Furniss won a bronze medal in the 200 IM at the 1972 Olympics in Munich, an event where he was once a world record holder.
In the 1976 Olympics, Strachan brought home a gold medal in the 400 IM while also setting the world record in the event.