Legendary Indiana Diving Coach Jeff Huber Retiring After 24 Seasons

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – After more than 35 years of coaching at the highest levels in domestic and international diving, Indiana University head diving coach Dr. Jeff Huber today announced his retirement from coaching.

At the request of Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics, Fred Glass, Huber has agreed to continue with the IU program through August 2013. A national search for Huber’s successor will begin in immediately, and will be led by Associate Athletic Director for Facilities and External Alliances, Eric Neuburger.

“Coach Huber’s leadership of the Indiana University Diving program is legendary,” Glass said. “With multiple national champions and Olympians over his quarter century at the program’s helm, Jeff has made his mark on the world stage representing IU with distinction. On a personal note, it has been an honor and a pleasure for me to have had the opportunity to know Jeff as a man of not only amazing ability, but great integrity. I wish him, Lesa, Julia, and David all the best in this new phase of their lives.”

“I verbally committed to Indiana University as a high school senior but changed my mind at the last minute,” Huber said. “To have a second chance to come to IU and continue the diving tradition established by legendary IU diving coach Hobie Billingsley was a dream come true for me. The day I stepped on campus I felt like I had been here my whole life.

“There is no better place in the country than Indiana University. My wife Lesa is a faculty member at IU and both of our children, Julia and David, are graduates of IU. We are an IU family. I want to thank the athletic department staff for their many hours of hard work and support. Many people behind the scene make for a successful program and they don’t often get the recognition they deserve. I also want to thank head swimming coach Ray Loozeand his staff for their dedication, perseverance, and hard work. They have been an inspiration to me these past few years. I also want to thank athletic director Fred Glass for his leadership and gestures of kindness and support. Finally, I want to thank my wife and children for their truly remarkable understanding and support throughout my coaching career.”

Currently in the midst of his 24th season at the helm of the storied IU program, Indiana divers have flourished under the 12-time U.S. National Coach of the Year. In Huber, Indiana divers work daily with a mentor who served as a coach for the United States at three of the last four Olympic games. He has been recognized as the Big Ten Coach of the Year on 14 occasions (six for women’s and eight for men’s) and has coached student-athletes to 42 Big Ten titles and 19 Big Ten Diver of the Year awards.

In October 2012, Huber was given the Mike Peppe Award by USA Diving for the 12th time in his career and the fifth-straight year after leading Indiana Diving to the overall team title at the AT&T National Diving Championships in August. The 2011-12 season was a big one for the IU men’s diving team. Darian Schmidt was named the Big Ten Diver of the Championships after winning his first conference title on the 3-meter springboard. Conor Murphy took second on the platform with a career-best score of 426.55.

Zac Nees went on to earn Big Ten Diver of the Year accolades after placing 13th on the 1-meter, sixth on the 3-meter and eighth on the platform at the NCAA Championships. Darian Schmidt also earned All-America honors on the 1-meter (12th), 3-meter (7th) and platform (16th). Murphy earned his first All-America accolade on the platform with a fifth-place finish. On the women’s side, Amy Cozad placed third on the platform at the NCAA Championships. It was the first time in Huber’s career that six different IU athletes achieved a top-eight finish at the NCAA Championships in the same season.

Under the direction of Huber, Indiana divers have competed at the Olympics, Pan Am Games, World University Games, FINA Diving World Cup, and won multiple USA Diving national titles. His divers have won a total of five NCAA titles, most recently by Olympian Christina Loukas who was the 2009 NCAA Champion on the 3-meter springboard. Loukas’ NCAA record set at the meet still stands today.

A total of 123 NCAA All-America accolades have been brought back to Bloomington under Huber’s watch, with at least one diver earning All-America honors in each of his 23 seasons. The women have earned five or more All-America honors on six different occasions, while the men have reached that mark three times, including a program-best 12 All-America certificates in 2012.

Internationally, Huber earned the honor of serving as a coach with the United States Olympic Team in the summers of 2000, 2004 and 2008. He also coached for the Dominican Republic at the 1984 Olympic Games. Huber added to his already impressive international experience during the summer of 2003, serving as the head coach of the U.S. National Team. He was the co-head coach for the United States at the Pan-American games in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, and at the World Championships in Barcelona, Spain. Among his other international experience includes coaching at the 2009 World Championships, the 1998 Goodwill Games, the 1991, 2005 and 2007 World University Games and numerous Grand Prix international meets. He has been named a U.S. Olympic Festival coach twice. During his career he has been named the NCAA Coach of the Year and the USOC Coach of the Year.

Huber is also the recipient of the Bill Orwig Medal for unique and significant contributions to Indiana University athletics program.

Prior to his arrival at Indiana in 1989, Huber placed his name squarely on the coaching map with the success his teams achieved at the University of Nebraska. Huber coached both the Cornhuskers’ men and women for 11 years. During that time, Nebraska divers won 27 Big Eight Conference championship titles, 20 NCAA All-America awards, and two Academic All-America accolades, while setting nine conference records. Huber coached 10 U.S. national finalists and directed his team to a third-place team award at the 1988 U.S. Indoor National Championships. He garnered Big Eight Coach of the Year recognition in 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, and 1989. While at Nebraska in 1987, Huber received the coaches’ Whosam Award. In honor of former Olympic gold medalist Dr. Sammy Lee, the award is given annually to a person who has demonstrated the high values and ideals and a commitment to the sport of diving.

He also has authored numerous articles for several publications, including The Diver, National Strength and Conditioning Journal, RIP Magazine, U.S. Diving Coach Development Manual and The Sport Psychologist, an international research journal. In 2001, he authored a series of diving training videotapes and in 2006 he authored two chapters in the USA Diving coach development reference manual. Huber recently published a graduate-level textbook on coaching, titled “Applying Educational Psychology in Coaching Athletes.

A native of Buena Park, Calif., Huber was a California state high school diving champion and record-holder, a four-time letterman at the University of Wisconsin, and was a finalist at both the Big Ten and U.S. National Championships. He also qualified for and competed at the 1976 U.S. Olympic Trials. He received a bachelor’s degree in English and Education in 1975 from the University of Wisconsin and went on to earn a master’s in English in 1978 at California State University-Fullerton, while working as head diving coach at Cypress College. Huber completed a master’s in education in curriculum and instruction and a Ph.D. in educational psychology in 1985 and 1989, respectively, both from the University of Nebraska. Huber is a part-time adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Counseling and Educational Psychology, and the Department of Kinesiology at Indiana.

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Jeff is the “Eddie Reese” of diving

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Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of SwimSwam.com. 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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