The Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sport, based at the University of Minnesota, has released its 2020-2021 Women in College Coaching Report Card.
As sports wholistically, both swimming and diving received an “F”, the lowest grade possible, in the center’s evaluation of the number of women who were head coaches of women’s programs.
The Tucker Center found that only 21.9% of women’s diving programs were led by female head coaches, while only 20.5% of women’s swimming programs were led by female head coaches.
The study does note that in sports like swimming and track & field, there is a higher percentage than most sports of programs where the men’s and women’s teams share a head coach.
Both sports did, however, see small improvements versus the Tucker Center’s 2019-2020 report card, where 21.8% of diving head coaches and 17.9% of swimming head coaches were female.
A comparison of the swimming numbers:
- 2019-2020 – 35 female head coaches, 161 male head coaches
- 2020-2021 – 40 female head coaches, 155 male head coaches
Head Coach Number and Percentile Alphabetically by Sport and Gender for Division-I Women’s Teams 2020-2021
The report breaks down the data by conference, institution, sport, family narrative, age, and a number of other factors.
Only 18 schools among NCAA Division I institutions received the top grade of “A” under the Tucker Center’s grading scale, meaning that at least 70% of the head coaches of their women’s programs are female. Of those 18 programs, only 8 sponsor swimming and diving programs, and of those 8, 4 head coaches are women:
- Cincinnati (combined program) – Mandy Commons-DiSalle – female
- Illinois (women only) – Sue Novitsky – female
- Monmouth (combined program) – Matt Nunnally – male
- Northeastern (women only) – Roy Coates – male
- Rhode Island (women only) – Lilly Falconer Deering* – female
- San Diego (women only) – Mike Keeler – male
- Toledo (women only) – Brie Globig – female
- UNLV (combined) – Ben Loorz – male
*In May, Rhode Island named Deering as the interim head coach after Mick Westkott, who has been with the program for 50 seasons, stepped into a role as an associate head coach/advisor to Deering.