UNC Adds Olympian Juan Estevez To Staff As Assistant Diving Coach

Courtesy: UNC Athletics

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – North Carolina swimming and diving has hired Juan Estevez, a member of Cuba’s 2000 Olympic Team, as an assistant diving coach, as announced by head diving coach Yaidel Gamboa and head coach Mark Gangloff on Thursday.

Bringing with him a wealth of experience, Estevez will arrive in Chapel Hill this summer ahead of the 2024-25 season.

“I am extremely excited to welcome Juan to our coaching staff and to work alongside him for the years to come,” said Gamboa. “I have known him for many years and I know his experience as an elite international diver, and ultimately as an elite coach, will make our team better and stronger. I can’t wait to have him on my side coaching this team to a new level of excellence.”

Estevez has a proven track record of developing young talent to national and international competitive levels. He will join the Tar Heels having spent the last three years as an assistant diving coach at Orlando Dive Academy.

In his role in Florida, he coached 10 divers to the 2022 YMCA National Diving Championships where they brought home three gold, three silver and one bronze medal. His athletes then went on to earn silver and bronze at the 2022 USA Junior National Championships.

In 2023, Estevez’s divers secured six golds and four silvers at USA Diving Regionals as well as five golds, three silvers and three bronzes at AAU Diving Regionals. He also placed an athlete on the AAU Diving National Team for the Berlin Cup.

“Juan is an expert coach that I am excited to welcome to Carolina,” said Gangloff. “His experience as an athlete and his development of young divers made him the perfect candidate to join our staff. We have consistently had one of the highest performing diving programs in the country and I think adding Juan’s expertise will add to the great things going on here at Carolina.”

So far this season, 15 of Estevez’s divers competed at the Junior Regions 3 Championships and combined for 18 medals, seven which were gold. He is currently preparing his athletes for the upcoming USA Diving Championships.

“I am exceedingly grateful to Mark, Yaidel and UNC for giving me the opportunity to join the swimming and diving coaching staff,” said Estevez. “UNC is a prestigious university and has a combination of academic rigor, research opportunities, affordability and vibrant campus life that I can’t wait to be a part of soon enough. I am so proud of Yaidel for his hard work, dedication, discipline and being an exceptional person with utmost respect. I can’t wait to be on his side. Mark is a person who brings out the best in others so I am really happy to have the opportunity to work closely with him to get this team to a new level. I can’t wait to succeed together! I will put all my coaching ability, effort and dedication for the student-athletes to continue to grow and excel at what they do in and out of the pool, and I will represent the UNC colors to the best of my capability.”

Estevez began diving at the age of nine and quickly rose to the Cuban Junior National Team, securing over 15 junior national titles. He won two gold medals at the 1987 Central American and Caribbean Games and collected gold and silver at the 1989 Central American and Caribbean Games.

After his success at the junior level, Estevez joined the Cuban Senior National Team in 1989 and became a seven-time senior national champion. He earned six gold medals at the Cuba Cup International, silver at the 12th Festival Olímpico Mexicano, bronze at the CAN-AM-MEX, gold at the Copa Esportiva International and gold and silver at the International Competition.

He was named to the Cuban Olympic Team for the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.

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