UVA Associate Head Coach Blaire Bachman To Be Director of Swimming and Diving At Texas A&M

After announcing it would combine its men’s and women’s programs under a “Director of Swimming & Diving” a month ago, Texas A&M has named Blaire Bachman as its Director of Swimming & Diving.

Bachman has been with Virginia since 2017 and was an assistant coach with the program for four years before being promoted to associate head coach in 2021. While at Virginia, Bachman worked primarily with the upper mid-distance groups and directly coached Paige Madden. She also has served as the women’s recruiting coordinator and most recently brought in SwimSwam’s #3 ranked recruiting class.

Last summer, Bachman served as an assistant coach for the USA Swimming staff at the 2023 World Championships.

“First off I want to thank Trev Alberts, Brad Barnes, the entire Texas A&M administration and community for welcoming me with such Aggie hospitality,” Bachman said. “I am honored to be the Director of Swimming & Diving, a new era for Texas A&M as the men’s and women’s programs combine as one team, with one vision. The legacy established by both Steve Bultman and Jay Holmes will provide a foundation for this team’s future success, and for that I am truly grateful. The pride and spirit that Aggies have is second to none and I’m excited to be a part of it. Thanks and Gig ’em.”

Prior to arriving at Virginia, Bachman spent a season as an assistant coach with Indiana where she was the women’s recruiting coordinator. Before Indiana, she spent a season with Dartmouth where she also was the women’s recruiting coordinator.

Bachman already has head coaching experience as she spent five years with NAIA’s Brenau University. While at Brenau, she was named the 2014 NAIA Swimming and Diving Women’s Coach of the Year.

She graduated from Georgia College and State University in 2009 with a degree in mass communication, with a concentration in Public Relations.

As previously mentioned, the men’s and women’s programs at Texas A&M will undergo a change as they will be combined under Bachman as Director of Swimming and Diving. Previously, the teams had separate coaching staffs with Steve Bultman leading the women’s program and Jay Holmes leading the men’s programs. Bultman announced his retirement set for the end of this past season in January.

This past season, the women’s program finished 3rd out of 12 teams at the 2024 SEC Championships and went on to finish 14th at NCAAs. That was their highest finish on the women’s side since 2019.  The men’s program was 4th out of 10 teams at SECs and 16th at NCAAs.

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Aggiefan1990
2 months ago

Whether this is a good hire or not won’t be determined for several years. I wish Blaire nothing but the best of luck. She has some impressive accomplishments at UVA. My concerns are not with Blaire but with the hiring process. If the rumor mill is accurate and I believe it is here, they made the offer to 3 top tier head coaches (all of whom coached men and women), and another head women’s coach, all of whom turned it down. Why? Was it because they were pursuing candidates they knew they couldn’t afford expecting they would want to come to A&M, well because it’s A&M? Or was it because those coaches sensed a lack of commitment within the administration?… Read more »

Just a thought…
Reply to  Aggiefan1990
2 months ago

I second this!!!!

Honest swim fan
2 months ago

Did she ever swim competitively herself? Explain.

Zach
2 months ago

Every alum is incredibly bummed for Jay. We wish our new swimming director nothing but absolute success, but this stings. ALOT. I had the pleasure of getting to swim for Mel Nash when Jay was our assistant coach, and we’re all so proud of what he has done for the program since becoming the head coach. I’m completely blown away with how fast and deep TAMU men have gotten under Jay’s leadership and wish the new AD hadn’t rushed into this, but that’s the collegiate coaching landscape these days. I really hope there’s a way to keep Jay and his staff if possible, and if they still want to be there. They’ve done such a great job imo and the… Read more »

Kimag
Reply to  Zach
2 months ago

Love Jay. He is an awesome coach and an awesome man. My son was blessed to swim for him.

Interested party
2 months ago

This will an interesting Aggie Swim Camp, since Jay had the final say on the camp. I know at UT they promised a piece of the UT camp to Bowman. I wonder what was promised Bachman?

Texan
Reply to  Interested party
2 months ago

It’ll just be messy this year and everyone will get past it. Camp is always tricky in an Olympic year because Trials are going on when camp would normally be happening. While no one likes to leave money on the table, I doubt that this year’s camp was a major sticking point in negotiations.

Interested party
2 months ago

We can predict all we want here but only time will decide if A&M was right or wrong with this hire. I have seen over the years where a hire was not “first choice” or a “big splash” become the best or great hire. I have also seen the opposite where you say “What were they thinking?”. Jay has been loyal for 37 years and defines A&M swimming but the AD has NOT been there very long and sees things from a different perspective. I also know that this is different than UT. Carol Capitani is in a different situation than Jay at UT. She finished in the top 2 at NCAA’s for 3 years and has more leverage for… Read more »

Swammer TX
2 months ago

My prediction is the program won’t be around much longer.
Colleges don’t like to spend money, they love to make money. No matter how many olympians or conference titles a team has our sport is a money pit.
The women’s team alone costs A&M $500K in just salaries and renting pool space.

Follow my bubbles
Reply to  Swammer TX
2 months ago

Except A&M has more money than almost every other college athletic program out there. You should worry if you are a California school or anyone having just left the PAC, as I’ve heard they’re in deep trouble (and this is before they’ve even started paying athletes).

biodogtexas
Reply to  Follow my bubbles
2 months ago

Jumbo Fisher has a buyout that’s costing them 7+ million per year for the next 7. That money has to come from somewhere.

Just a thought…
Reply to  Follow my bubbles
2 months ago

The football program is ALL that a&m cares about. Money, money, money.

Follow my bubbles
Reply to  Just a thought…
2 months ago

Considering Aggie baseball has been ranked #1, softball is top 10, mens basketball took #1 seed Houston to the wire, tennis is doing well, and even men/womens swimming coaches poll had both in the top 12; your sentiment appears to be rather off the mark. A&M football does bring in lots of cash though.

Adam Depmore
2 months ago

A&M head coach job position just got uploaded to LinkedIn. https://tamus.wd1.myworkdayjobs.com/TAMU_External/job/College-Station-TX/Head-Swimming—Diving-Coach_R-073192

But then it asks for a director for swimming and diving…

Just a thought…
2 months ago

Seems to me in this Blaire hire, they are going to fire everyone else due to Jimbo taking all of a&m’s money. Sad to see that the swimming program is collateral. It’s a bad time to be out of a job.

Brian Bruner
Reply to  Just a thought…
2 months ago

One George Strait concert at Kyle Field this summer just about takes care of Jimbo.

biodogtexas
Reply to  Brian Bruner
2 months ago

not much actually goes to A&M,

Just a thought…
Reply to  Brian Bruner
2 months ago

Well then why did they fire over 20 people in admin who have been here forever?

swimws
Reply to  Just a thought…
2 months ago

Because they were not needed?

Shaddy419
Reply to  Just a thought…
2 months ago

They did just get a new AD so that could be the reason why

Ranger Coach
Reply to  Just a thought…
2 months ago

Because they were involved in giving Jimbo a massive payraise when his performance didn’t justify him getting a massive payraise with an insane buyout?

About Anya Pelshaw

Anya Pelshaw

Anya has been with SwimSwam since June 2021 as both a writer and social media coordinator. She was in attendance at the 2022 and 2023 Women's NCAA Championships writing and doing social media for SwimSwam. Currently, Anya is pursuing her B.A. in Economics and a minor in Government & Law at …

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