Former U.S. National Team head coach Mark Schubert will return to the Mission Viejo club where he got his start, taking over for retiring head coach Bill Rose.
“This is a great opportunity. I get to work with Coach Rose for a year. I’m going to be associate head with him and I’m looking forward to that,” said Coach Schubert. “To be able to go back and coach at a club I started is like a dream come true for me.”
Schubert originally coached for Mission Viejo from 1972 to 1985, training a small army of Olympians and winning 44 national team titles and multiple ASCA Coach of the Year awards.
“It’s incredibly poetic Mark will be able to complete his career where he made his name. It’s a wonderful thing for the club, the parents and the community. The facility that has been such a special place has new life with Mark and an $8,000,000 investment. This is a masterful selection considering the massive pool renovations. Mark has the drive, the knowledge, the experience and the passion to further enhance Mission Viejo’s reputation as a swimming mecca.”
— Brian Goodell, Mission Viejo Alum, 1976 1500 Free Olympic Champion
From there, Schubert had a few years heading up the Mission Bay Makos Swim Team in Florida before jumping into the college realm with the University of Texas. With the Longhorns, Schubert coached multiple American record-holders as well as two team NCAA titles in 1990 and 1991.
Schubert also spent more than a decade coaching at the University of Southern California for three more NCAA team titles.
“It’s great to see a legend in our sport going back to the beginning, back to the club he put on the national map…and the international map. It’s going back to the culture he established with national, world, and Olympic champions. Mark began this tradition of excellence in the mid 1970s, one that impacted the sport globally, and he’ll do it in Mission Viejo again.”
— Lenny Krayzelburg, 4-time Olympic Gold Medalist, former USC Swimmer under Coach Schubert
Internationally, he served as USA Swimming’s National Team head coach for a brief stint in 2009-2010, but was terminated from the job for reasons that were unclear at the time.
Since then, Schubert’s time with USA Swimming has factored into a lawsuit between former professional swimmer Dagny Knutson and her former attorney. During his time in charge of the national team, Schubert reportedly promised Knutson and fellow swimmer Kate Ziegler that if they moved to California to join USA Swimming’s new elite training group, that the swimming federation would pay for their tuition to a local school, plus room and board and training expenses. Knutson passed up a roster spot at Auburn University and gave up her amateurism status (and any future college career) to take the deal.
But once Schubert was removed from his post, that deal fell through, and Knutson says only some of the promised costs were covered. Knutson hired an attorney, Richard Foster, who procured the two swimmers a new deal, but Knutson says the new deal was far inferior to the original agreement promised, and eventually sued Foster for not disclosing his legal history and closeness with USA Swimming and important federation figures.
Schubert, for his part, landed as the CEO and head coach at Golden West Swim Club in California, where he was involved in another legal scuffle. This time, former Golden West coach Dia Rianda sued Schubert for wrongful termination, saying she was fired after she complained to USA Swimming about inappropriate behavior by a different coach, Bill Jewell. Jewell was eventually banned by USA Swimming for 3 years, and the suit between Rianda and Schubert was settled out of court.
But the Mission Viejo job is a homecoming for Schubert, who comes full-circle in the club realm with the Nadadores, a nationally-renowned program for some years.
Mission Viejo was in the head coaching market for the first time in decades when longtime head coach Bill Rose announced his retirement earlier this year. Rose, who has been with the club since 1992, will coach through this December of 2017 before stepping back into retirement. That means he and Schubert will coach together for the 2017 calendar year.