Penn State has announced the addition of two new coaches to its swimming and diving staff. Penn State alumnus Josh Graham joins the program as an assistant swimming coach, while Jeff DiNicola will become the program’s head diving coach.
Graham comes to the program after serving as an assistant coach at Davidson since the summer of 2012. There, he coached the teams’ men’s and wmoen’s middle-distance and distance groups.
That makes him an apt replacement for Erik Posegay, who left the program this summer to take an assistant position at the University of Wisconsin. Posegay was the primary coach of the Penn State distance group.
That group last year included junior Ally McHugh, who finished 2nd behind Katie Ledecky in the 1650 free and this summer won the 400 IM USA Swimming National Championship and earned a spot on the Pan Pacs team that begins competition on Thursday in Tokyo.
During Graham’s time at Davidson, he coached 15 conference champions and his athletes broke more than 30 school records.
Prior to Davidson, Graham was the lead senior coach at SEVA in Newport News, Virginia, where he worked primarily with swimmers transitioning to the team’s senior group.
Graham graduated from Penn State in 2009 with a degree in criminology, where he was a 4-year member of the varsity swim team. In high school, he set a Virginia state record in the 200 free.
DiNicola comes from Dallas, Texas where he spent the last year-and-a-half with the Mustangs in the Sun Diving Team. He previously was the head diving coach at Arkansas from 2013-2016 where he coached the team’s first NCAA qualifier since 2008. In 2014, every single one of Arkansas’ divers qualified for zone competition. From 2003-2005 he was the diving coach at Nebraska, and before that he worked at New Mexico and his alma mater Southwest Missouri State. In his first season there, he was the Missouri Valley Conference Diving Coach of the Year. As an athlete, he was a two-time MVC Diver of the Year.
DiNicola replaces Dennis Ceppa, who led the Penn State diving program for 4 seasons.
The Penn State women finished 29th at NCAAs last year, with 26 points all earned by McHugh (their only NCAA qualifier). The Penn State men placed 30th with 14 points: all scored by their only NCAA qualifier diver Hector Boissier.