Jim Halliburton has resigned as the head coach of the Saint Louis University swimming & diving program. He has accepted a coaching role at cross-town WashU in St. Louis.
Halliburton is the second NCAA Division I head coach to resign his position in the last two weeks as fall classes start across the country. At Saint Louis, fall semester classes began on Wednesday, August 24, a week before Halliburton’s resignation was announced.
Tulane head coach Leah Stancil also left the program in late August to take on an assistant position at nearby LSU.
Halliburton was the head coach at Saint Louis University for 21 years. In that period, the team won 20 conference event championships and produced 28 NCAA “B” qualifying times.
He had a SLU record of 582-188-1 (.756), ranking fourth on the NCAA Division I all-time victories list. The Billiken men posted a 274-90 ledger and the Billiken women were 308-98-1 in his 21 years, and swimmers on both teams set school records in all 21 events.
Halliburton was the longest-tenured head coach in the history of Saint Louis University athletics across all sports.
“We thank Jim for his many years of service to Saint Louis University,” Saint Louis Director of Athletics Chris May said. “The swimming and diving program transformed greatly during his 21 years at SLU, and he led the program and student-athletes with grace. We all wish Jim well in his next steps, and we look forward to celebrating him in the near future.
“We have already begun the search process for a new head coach and are evaluating candidates from coast to coast,” May continued. “Our next head coach will be someone who can execute our strategic objectives and be committed to the student-athlete experience.”
The program has a staff of three coaches to run the program while the search for a new head coach is underway. Mary Woods is in her first season as a full-time assistant after two years as a graduate assistant, Renee Ham has spent almost three years as the school’s head diving coach, and Austin Mayer is a graduate assistant. Ham also has experience as a swimming coach at the high school level.
Saint Louis U finished 10th out of 11 women’s teams at the 2022 Atlantic 10 Championships and 8th out of 8 men’s teams – albeit just 5.5 points behind 7th-place Fordham.
The women’s team has not been better than 8th place since they finished 6th in the 2005-2006 season. The men finished 5th as recently as the 2017-2018 season, out of 8 teams, although 2022 was their second-straight last-place finish at the meet.
The WashU men’s team finished 9th at last year’s NCAA Division III Championships with 158 points while the women took 21st place with 33 points.
“We are very excited to welcome Jim Halliburton to the WashU Swimming & Diving program,” WashU head coach Brad Shively said. “Jim brings with him a wealth of experiences and successes from the high school, club, and collegiate levels that total over 40 years. He has a strong belief in the impact that Washington University can make on our community, and his passion will make a lasting impact on our student-athletes. We are confident that his leadership and technical knowledge will be a great addition to our team.”
Saint Louis U kicks off its season with an intrasquad meet on September 17. Their first intercollegiate meet will be against WashU on September 23.
Saint Louis University is an NCAA Division I program, while WashU is a Division III program. Last year, the Saint Louis women won the dual meet 147-89 while WashU won the men’s meet 155-75.