Courtesy: Manchester Athletics
Karns will bring an immense amount of experience to Manchester, with 40 years of coaching and teaching under his belt.
Karns is certified as a Level 5 coach by the American Swim Coaches Association. He has coached NCAA All-Americans, High School All-Americans, Junior and Senior National Qualifiers and Olympic Trials Qualifiers throughout his distinguished career. He has also served as the chair of the NCAA Division II Swimming and Diving National Championship Committee.
Roger arrives in North Manchester after serving as the head men’s and women’s swimming coach at NCAA Division II Lewis University located in Romeoville, Ill. During his 10 years with the Flyers, Coach Karns’ programs produced six conference champions, including a pair of Great Lakes Valley Conference (GLVC) Male Freshmen of the Year.
Before Lewis, Karns served as assistant coach at Grand Valley State University from 2008-11. Karns helped the Laker men’s and women’s teams to top-10 finishes at the NCAA Division II National Championships in each of his three seasons. Individually, Grand Valley State earned 200 All-America Awards during Karns’ tenure. He was also influential in helping Grand Valley State to a pair of Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championships. The men won in 2010 while the women took home the title in 2009.
Before arriving at Grand Valley State, Karns was the head swimming coach at Wawasee High School in nearby Syracuse, Ind. from 1989-2008 where his teams amassed a 359-130-2 dual meet record. Karns guided Wawasee to nine boys and three girls Indiana Sectional team championships. Wawasee finished second at the Indiana State meet in 1994, seventh in 1993, and10th in both 1997 and 2003. In addition, Wawasee claimed four Northern Lakes Conference girls titles and three boys crowns. Individually, Karns coached 17 NISCA High School All-Americans, three state champions and four that earned runner-up honors. Karns was named Northern Lakes Conference and Indiana Sectional Coach of the Year 18 times. Prior to Wawasee, Karns was the head coach at NorthWood High School from 1983-89.
Karns graduated from Ball State University with a bachelor’s degree in education in 1980 and earned a master’s in education in from Indiana University-South Bend in 1990. Karns was a two-year letter winner in swimming at Ball State and was a part of a then record-setting 800 free relay team.
Roger and his wife, Vicki, have three children, Laura, Tyler and Lydia.