Arizona State University began the new year by combining its men’s and women’s swimming programs under first-year men’s coach Mike Chasson. Fourteen-year women’s coach Tim Hill was placed on administrative leave and his contract will not be renewed. The decision came after a long study of attrition problems in the women’s program that has affected ASU’s competitiveness at the national level and its graduation rate.
Hill’s teams had five top-10 NCAA finishes in the 1980s, but finished 23rd, 28th and 29th the last three years. The team currently is ranked 21st in the most recent Speedo/CSCAA poll.
Chasson came to ASU from Harvard, where he guided the Crimson to 10th place at the 1998 NCAA Championships, after the retirement of Ernie Maglischo. The ASU men currently are ranked 11th.
Chasson’s assistant coaches for the combined program are Victor Wales, Heather Johnston and Derigan Silver.