Western Illinois Is Without a Head Coach for the 2nd Time This Season

For the 2nd time in the 2019-2020 academic year, Western Illinois University has lost their head swimming and diving coach. The job last opened up on September 10th, when the prior head coach Greg Naumann was terminated due to a “lack of control and responsibility to ensure the principle of student-athlete well-being.” Naumann had been the head coach for 10 seasons and was named the 2019 Summit League Men’s Coach of the Year after leading his team to 4 school records.

Naumann was replaced in November by WIU alumnus Scott Johanssen, but multiple members of the women’s swimming & diving team tell SwimSwam that they were informed of Johanssen’s departure from the program on January 30th, with only 20 days to go until the team’s conference championship meets. One athlete said that they were not given more details, but that director of athletics Danielle Surprenant told them that “it was a personal matter” and that Johanssen would no longer be working with the team.

SwimSwam has reached out to the WIU Athletics Department for more information, though when Naumann departed in the fall, they responded that they do not comment on personnel matters (although prior press releases about personnel matters in other coaches belie that claim). SwimSwam has also filed a Freedom of Information Act with the university for more information on Johanssen’s departure.

Johanssen, who was a team captain at Western Illinois in 1983, is a veteran coach who among other stops was the head coach at Augustana College in Illinois from 2008 until 2014. There he was twice named as the conference coach of the year.

Alex Peach, who is in his 2nd season as a graduate assistant for swimming, is currently leading the program the swimmers tell SwimSwam. WIU finished their regular season on February 7th at Iowa and are now preparing for the Summit League Championships that run from February 19th-22nd in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Johanssen is still listed as the team’s head coach on its website.

Naumann’s contract was for $3,935 per month, with a 10 month term, meaning a salary of about $39,350 over the course of a season. That makes Western Illinois one of the lowest-paying head coaching jobs in Division I swimming.

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Ed bagley

What a joke… time to cut all Illinois swim programs.

Dmswim

Northwestern is doing pretty well.

dude

Northwestern is a private school.

Ross gellar

Illinois, eiu, wiu, siu, uic all awful programs. Northwestern is a private school. With little to worry about when it comes to funding. These kids deserve better.

SwimMom

UIC and U of I are awful programs? I bet their swimmers would disagree. Not everyone is going to compete at the highest level…

uhOH

Worst comment ever

hookem91

Man, you gotta feel for these swimmers. I hope they do well at their conference meet!

Is WIU a fully funded program? Something seems off and potentially noncompliant here given that a grad assistant is currently leading the program.

Working swim mom

My understanding is that they have very little funding. The grad assistant was the only coach left.

Anonymous

39k sucks

Mark

Lol, it’s better than some others in the NCAA!

MO Swim

Only slightly less than what the Saint Louis University head coach gets. Crazy that the 3 lowest salaries in D1 are all in MO and IL

swimws

Less then a lot of the assistants in the other sports as well

67King

That’s worse than probably most full time club level head coaching salaries.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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