UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa., July 8. OLYMPIC gold medalist and SEC record-holder John Hargis is coming aboard the Penn State Men's and Women's Swimming staff after a one year assistant coaching stint at UNLV. Prior to UNLV, Hargis served as the Head Age Group Coach for the Raleigh, N.C. Swimming Association for a year and a half.
"John has excelled at each level of his career, whether it has been as an athlete or now as a coach," said Penn State head coach Bill Dorenkott "We believe that we have attracted one of the best and brightest young coaches in the country to help us in our goal of elevating our program to a place among the nation's elite."
Hargis was a member of the Auburn swim team from 1994-1997 and helped the Tigers to their first SEC Championship in 1994. He also helped lead the Tigers to their first national championship in 1997. Auburn won the SEC Championship three of the four years he swam there. He still holds the SEC record of 46.40 in the 100 yard butterfly.
Hargis earned a gold medal in the 1996 Olympics as part of the 400 medley relay team. He earned a place on the team by winning the 100 fly at the Olympic Trials. He also earned a silver medal in the 400 meter medley relay at the World Championships in Perth, Australia in 1998.
"Penn State University has one of the richest academic and athletic traditions in the NCAA," Hargis said. "I am looking forward to the opportunity and the challenge of helping to take Penn State Swimming to the next level."
Hargis is a 1999 graduate of Auburn with a degree in health promotion and sports management.