Since bringing on associate head sprint coach Coley Stickels and assistant Coach Mark Hill, Indiana Swimming has expanded it’s diversity, it’s versatility, and the opportunities it has to serve each individual need of it’s athletes.
IU has been steadily climbing up the ladder of both NCAA and international swimming, breaking records on collegiate, national, and global stages for the last few year. It hasn’t just been in 1 area though: We’ve seen the rise of Cody Miller and Lilly King in breaststroke, Blake Pieroni and Kennedy Goss mid-distance freestyle, and most recently, Zane Grothe and Ashley Neidigh in distance freestlyle. This starts from within, with IU currently having 7 different training groups, each with specified focuses, so that any athlete can find a training niche that works for them.
This system was enhanced with Coley and Mark as they filled the sprint archetype of the equation after the retirement of Dennis Dale. With so many moving parts and differing schedules, Looze cites open communication as a key to success:
“I try to put myself at a hub where it’s a crossroads in the program, so we can make good decisions…
so we can meet the needs of traditional kinds of swimmers,
but we can also meet the needs of somebody that’ll do well with a Coley Stickels,
where it’s 6 practices a week, 3000 a day.”
Looze also emphasized similar values bringing the team together, even if everyone within the team has different needs. Looze cited Arizona State and Olympic Team Head Coach Bob Bowman as telling him: “You know, Ray. Work still works”. Looze prides all of his staff in valuing work, regardless of what form it takes in or out of the pool.