COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Dave Durden and Greg Meehan, decorated college coaches and experienced mentors on USA Swimming’s international coaching staffs, have been named head coaches for the 2020 United States Olympic Swimming Team, USA Swimming National Team Managing Director Lindsay Mintenko announced today.
Durden, the men’s coach at the University of California, Berkeley, will serve as the men’s head coach, while Meehan, the Stanford University women’s coach, will lead the American women. Durden- and Meehan-coached swimmers combined to win 20 medals at the 2016 Olympic Games.
Durden and Meehan served in the same roles for USA Swimming at the 2017 FINA World Championships where the American roster won a record 38 medals in the pool competition in Budapest, Hungary. The duo also represented the United States as assistant coaches at the 2016 Olympic Games. Both are first-time U.S. Olympic Team head coaches.
“Dave and Greg have experienced tremendous success with both their collegiate teams and on USA Swimming’s recent international staffs. They have earned a great deal of respect among of our National Team members and other coaches around the country,” Mintenko said. “Our staff looks forward to collaborating with Dave and Greg over the next 18 months to put a plan in place to guide Team USA to continued success in Tokyo.”
Durden, an assistant men’s coach for the 2016 U.S. Olympic Team, led the way with six athletes on the U.S. men’s roster for the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships – Nathan Adrian, Sean Grieshop, Ryan Murphy, Jacob Pebley, Josh Prenot and Andrew Seliskar. In Tokyo, Durden’s swimmers combined for six medals, including a triple gold-medal performance from Murphy. In 2016, Durden guided six Cal swimmers to 11 medals at the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games.
The 2016 American Swimming Coaches Association Coach of the Year, Durden also served as the head coach for the U.S. men at the 2015 and 2017 FINA World Championships and was an assistant at the 2011 World Championships and the 2010 Pan Pacific Championships.
On the collegiate front, Durden has guided the Golden Bears to three men’s NCAA titles in Berkeley (2011, 2012, 2014), and his team has finished first or second at the NCAA Championships in each of the last nine seasons. He is in his 12th season as the men’s head coach at Cal.
“Through my conversations with Lindsay Mintenko and USA Swimming regarding this appointment, I found myself incredibly humbled in reviewing the list of coaching legends that have held this position,” Durden added. “I am grateful to the swimmers I have worked with, the coaches I have stood shoulder to shoulder with, the Cal Aquatic community that has supported me, and to our Athletic Director Jim Knowlton and his leadership to help me be in this position.
“Most importantly, I would like to thank my wife Cathy and our kids Jack and Mia that have allowed me to be who I am as a coach, and that have supported me every step of the way. I am excited to continue to work with Greg, Lindsay, and our greater USA Swimming coaching community as we prepare of our country’s best athletes for the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020.”
A women’s assistant coach for Team USA in Rio, Meehan coached five women onto the Team USA roster for the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships – Katie Drabot, Ella Eastin, Brooke Forde, Katie Ledecky and Simone Manuel – combining for 11 medals in Tokyo. Meehan’s swimmers also made quite an impact on the 2016 U.S. Olympic Swimming Team with Maya DiRado, Manuel and Lia Neal combining to earn nine medals in Rio.
At Stanford, Meehan has guided his women’s team to back-to-back NCAA titles in 2017 and 2018. He has served as the women’s head coach at Stanford since 2012 and has guided the Cardinal to top-three NCAA finishes in each of the past five seasons. He is a three-time NCAA Coach of the Year.
Prior to 2016, Meehan served as an assistant coach for Team USA at the 2015 FINA World Championships and the 2014 Pan Pacific Championships.
“There is no greater honor than representing your country on the world stage, and I am tremendously thankful to have been appointed Olympic women’s head coach,” Meehan said. “As we move into the second half of the Olympic Quad, I am excited about what is ahead and what needs to get done in the coming months on the road to Omaha, and then on to Tokyo.”
Meehan added: “I’d like to thank my wife Tess, and my son’s Sal and James. Their love and support continues to inspire me through this journey of coaching. I’d also like to extend an incredible note of gratitude to everyone at Stanford University – our Athletic Director Bernard Muir, our associate head coach Tracy Slusser and the incredible women that have been involved in the Stanford program over the past 6.5 years. I look forward to working with Dave, Lindsay, the USOC and the incredible coaches and athletes around the country that help make our team the best in the world.”
The Olympic Games Tokyo 2020 pool competition will be held July 25-Aug. 2, 2020. Swimmers will compete for spots on the Team USA roster for the Games at the 2020 U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Swimming set for June 21-28 in Omaha, Nebraska.
The coaching nominations are pending the approval of the United States Olympic Committee.
Below is a historical list of U.S. Olympic Swimming Team Head Coaches (1924-present):