Todd Schmitz, the head coach of the Colorado Stars, has been inducted into the Century High School Hall of Fame in his native Bismarck, North Dakota. He was honored, along with three other alumni and a former assistant principal, in a ceremony at the school’s football game on Friday, September 13th, and all weekend.
“It is a tremendous honor to be recognized by the Century High School Hall of Fame for my contributions to the USA Swimming community and the Olympic community,” Schmitz said. “I can truly say that I got a tremendous public education growing up in Bismarck, North Dakota. Century truly prepared me to take the next step into the real world and college.”
Schmitz is best known as the head coach of four-time Olympic Champion Missy Franklin, until she left for her collegiate training at Cal in the last few weeks. In addition to her four Olympic golds, Franklin also has 9 long course World Championships: at only 18, more than any woman in history.
The 34-year old Schmitz has already established a significant footprint in swimming, even in a very short career. He swam at Metro State University in college, before eventually taking a job as the 10 & under coach with the Stars, where he was first united with a young Franklin.
But Franklin isn’t his only success story. The Stars have had multiple swimmers named as the Colorado High School Swimmers of the Year besides Franklin. In 2009, they won the USA Swimming Winter Junior National Championship, and they did so without Franklin at the meet. The Stars have won multiple Colorado State Championships, and have sent a slew of athletes to have significant impacts at the NCAA level – including Jordan Mattern, who is now at Georgia and swam at the World Championships with Franklin this year.
The other inductees were former assistant principal August Schaeffer, Dr. Col. Parker Plante, Dr. Douglas W. Litchfield, and Eila Tello.
Tello is a media official with the U.S. State Department, currently serving as the Press Attache with the U.S. Embassy in Colombia; and Litchfield is a former president of the North Dakota Society of Eye Physicians and Surgeons;