Rick DeMont announced his retirement as head coach at the University of Arizona today, after 30 years with the program and four years as head coach.
“There is never a right time to make a decision like this and I thought long and hard about it,” said DeMont in press release. “I’ve been coaching here for 30 years, and despite the offer of a two-year extension, I decided that now is the right time to move on. I’ve given everything I have to Arizona swimming and diving and I’m looking forward to spending more time with my family and pursuing other passions. I want to thank the administration, staff and student-athletes for making this a wonderful journey and I look forward to seeing what the program can do in the coming years.”
Over the course of his time with the University of Arizona, DeMont coached 27 USA Swimming and NCAA individual national champions.
As a swimmer, DeMont was a former world record holder in the 400 and 1500 freestyles and the 400 freestyle relay. He swam collegiately for two years at Washington and two years at Arizona. DeMont has been inducted into both the International Swimming Hall of Fame and the Arizona Sports Hall of Fame.
In addition to his collegiate experience, he was an assistant coach for the South African Olympic Teams in 2000, 2004, and 2008 for his work with a number of South African Olympians who were based out of Arizona.
The now-open position will be the first major hire for new Wildcat athletic director Dave Heeke, who replaced the outgoing Greg Byrne in April.