Sprint News 5/25/12: Alabama Hires Pursley’s Daughter; Danish Head Gets Extension

…Alabama has announced another addition to their staff, in the hiring of Lisa Ebeling, who until her April 21st wedding was known as Lisa Pursley. Ebeling is the daughter of the Crimson Tide’s new head coach, Dennis Pursley. She comes to Alabama after spending one season as an assistant at Utah while they made their transition to major-conference swimming in 2011-2012. In the process, the Utes broke 15 new school records. Prior to that, she worked at the Phoenix Swim Club and at Rutgers. Ebeling is a former All-American at Arizona, graduating in 2007. This is huge for the staff, as out of the four announced paid coaches, she is by far the youngest (she graduated college 11 years after fellow assistant James Barber). Her addition should really help energize this staff (her father described her “tremendous energy and drive” as one of her greatest assets), and make it easier for them to connect with the young kids that they’re recruiting. The official press release, which can be seen here, interestingly avoided the subject of Ebeling being Pursley’s daughter…

…In other coaching news, Denmark announced that their National Team Director Paulus Wildeboer has been extended for four more years as the head of the federation. But there will be a change in his duties between now and Rio; at the request of Wildeboer, he will remain as the head coach of the National Training Center, while the position as the true National Team Director will be split off into a different role. Wildeboer led the Danes to three medals (including two gold) at last year’s World Championship meet; and with the advent of young backstroking superstar Mie Nielsen, that number could grow by the 2013 version. He also trains his two elite sons, who are Spanish in swimming nationality, Aschwin and Olaf. Aschwin has already been named to Spain’s 2012 Olympic Team…

…And in a third major coaching shift, Mike Byrne from Swimming New Zealand announced his resignation today. The decision came as no surprise, as the organization has been investigated multiple times in the last quadrennial, and for the second time it was recommended that Byrne be fired. The group has had numerous problems, including bickering and infighting, serious financial woes, and what some consider an overall failure to meet the needs of the group’s chief stakeholders…

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Smart move by the Danish! He has done an excellent job in coaching. Small country, big impact!

Eric t.

You forgot that Ebeling also had a successful stint at Rutgers after coaching at Phoenix swim club.


I cannot believe you dropped the ball and not reporting results from Mel Zajac meet in Vancouver?

It may be a small meet, but it is well attended by many of Australian olympics squad, as well as canadians and Park Tae Hwan (who’s in the australian squad anyway)

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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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