TUSCALOOSA, AL, September 30. CRIMSON Tide Head Coach Eric McIlquham announced this week the hiring of former Butler head coach Nichole Ellis as an assistant swimming and diving coach.
“We’re very excited to have Nichole join our staff,” McIlquham said. “She is a tremendous addition and brings a lot of knowledge and enthusiasm to the table. With the Nichole on board, we now have three coaches on this staff with NCAA Division I head coaching experience and that gives us one of the best staffs in the nation. I believe it also makes us the only combined (men and women) program in the country with three Division I head coaches on deck at the same time.”
Ellis comes to Alabama after a three year stint as head coach of Butler University, helping see the Bulldogs through one of the largest transitional periods in the program's history.
“I am very excited to be a part of a program with such a tremendous tradition,” Ellis said. “I can’t wait to get going and help make this program as great as it can be. Bama has a tremendous staff to help lead and facilitate some of the greatest talent the world has to offer. These athletes are going to be the team to get back to the top of the SEC.”
In Ellis' two seasons at Butler, ten school records were broken, while the Bulldogs' women's team posted the highest grade point average in the nation. Butler's team GPA of 3.69 for the fall, 2003 semester led the College Swimming Coaches Association of America's (CSCAA) "Academic All-America" list. Fifteen total swimmers earned Butler Athletic Director's Honor Roll accolades last season.
Prior to Butler, she was the assistant coach at IUPUI, her alma mater, during the 2001-02 season. As recruiting coordinator, Ellis brought in the largest recruiting class in Jaguar program history. She was also in charge of on-deck coaching and nutritional and weight workout design and implementation.
Ellis was a standout on the IUPUI swim team from 1997-2000, earning a Mid-Continent Conference championships in the 100 breaststroke in 1999. With the Jaguars, she was a four-year letterwinner and was named her team's captain all four seasons. Ellis holds six school records and was twice named to the all-conference team. She was the team's MVP for the 2000-01 season.
She also excelled academically, as she was a five-time academic all-conference selection and was cited as one of IUPUI's top 100 students in 2000 and 2001. In addition to her season at IUPUI, Ellis has also gained coaching experience through the Nike/IUPUI Swim Camp, the IUPUI Stroke Clinic, the Indy Dolphins Swim Club, and the Indiana and Auburn University Swim Camps.
Ellis graduated from IUPUI in December of 2001 with a degree in secondary education. She earned a master's degree in sports administration from Butler in 2004.