St. Xavier’s Todd Larkin Awarded National HS Coach of the Year Honor by NHSCA

by Riley Overend 1

June 09th, 2024 High School, News

After leading the St. Xavier boys to their 36th Kentucky state title in a row, head coach Todd Larkin was named National Coach of the Year earlier this week by the National High School Coaches Association (NHSCA).

Larkin, who graduated from the Louisville-based St. Xavier in 1986, has guided the program to state titles for the past 15 years. St. Xavier is tied with Florida’s Bolles School for the longest active streak in the country.

Army commit Johnny Crush capped his undefeated high school career with a dominant 383-point victory at the 2024 KHSAA State Championships in February, breaking individual records in the 100 freestyle (42.70) and the 100 backstroke (45.70). St. Xavier’s last loss came back in January of 2020 against Cincinnati St. Xavier.

“It’s all coach Larkin,” Crush told the Courier Journal in February. “He’s such an amazing coach, amazing person, amazing mentor to us. He gets on us when we do bad, and he makes us go fast. He does it in a loving way, and that’s why we’ve been a perfect team these four years.

“It’s not just letting ourselves down if we lose, it’s letting him down if we lose. Every single person on this team, that’s their greatest fear — letting coach Larkin down.”

Larkin’s quest for a 37th state title in a row should be tougher next season without Crush. However, he still has plenty of depth to develop as St. Xavier won nine of 12 events at the most recent KHSAA State Championships.

Larkin’s squad has also captured national high school crowns twice in the past three years. St. Xavier now boasts 60 state championships in total.

“That’s always going to be the bar in our program now that we’ve achieved that,” Larkin said of the national high school title. “They know the faster they go, the better chance we have. … We told our guys, ‘Be that team that they talk about in 10 years.’ They took it upon themselves, and I couldn’t be more proud of them.”

Other NHSCA Coach of the Year finalists in swimming and diving included Fargo North’s Talia Butery, Dowling Catholic’s Paul Eure, Cottonwood Classical’s Colleen Gibson, Panther Creek’s Megan Gnoza, Jackson Hole’s Jim Jenkins, Farmington’s Jen Marshall, and Livonia Stevenson’s Greg Phil. Last year’s recipient was Visitation School (Minn.) coach Nate Allen Linscheid.

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Tito
1 month ago

Well deserved. Extraordinary motivator!

About Riley Overend

Riley is an associate editor interested in the stories taking place outside of the pool just as much as the drama between the lane lines. A 2019 graduate of Boston College, he arrived at SwimSwam in April of 2022 after three years as a sports reporter and sports editor at newspapers …

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