SAN JOSE, California, July 9. SAN Jose State University women's swimming and diving head coach Sage Hopkins has announced that Brian Tanner will be the program's new diving coach.
Tanner brings years of diving experience to the Spartans as a competitor, coach and official. He comes to San Jose State from the Stanford Diving club program, where he worked for the past year under Stanford University head men's and women's diving coach Dr. Rick Schavone.
Prior to that, Tanner coached for two years at Santa Clara Diving, another premier diving club in the San Francisco Bay Area which operates out of the George Haines International Swim and Dive Center in Santa Clara, Calif. He is also the diving coach at De Anza College in Cupertino, Calif., and a diving coach at the Palo Alto Hills Country Club.
While coaching at De Anza, Tanner served as the diving meet director of the 2007 Commission on Athletics (COA) California Community College Championships, held at Ohlone College in early May. He had a diver place ninth in both springboard competitions at the state championships.
In August of 2006, Tanner was the volunteer diving coordinator for the 11th FINA World Masters Championships, hosted by Stanford. As a participant at the event, he placed sixth on the three-meter springboard and eighth on the one meter, having his overall contributions to the meet rewarded with a gold medal. Tanner is presently the meet co-director for the Senior Nationals, to be held later this summer, August 1-5, at Stanford, with the top divers in the nation expected to be on hand.
Tanner is the president of USA Diving's Northern California Diving Association, voted into the position by peers in the diving coach profession. Still diving competitively, Tanner was in action at the U.S. Masters Diving Nationals last month.
Tanner is a 1975 graduate of Jamesville DeWitt High School in Syracuse, N.Y., who attended Geneseo State University in Geneseo, N.Y., from 1975-77, majoring in biology. As a member of the diving team, he set the three-meter springboard school record as a freshman and made a pair of appearances at the NCAA Division III National Championships. A member of the first State University of New York Athletic Conference (SUNYAC) championship team in school history as a freshman in 1976, Tanner placed third on the one-meter board at the 1977 SUNYAC Championship. He trained with legendary diving coach Hobie Billingsley briefly during his sophomore year in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
Tanner has spent most of his adult career in the transportation and logistics field, owning his own air freight and logistics company and working in sales since 1982. He returned to diving in 2003.
Tanner replaces Peiling Gu, who announced her retirement following the 2006-07 season after four years in the Spartan program.
"I am very excited to be the head diving coach at San Jose State," said Tanner. "I look forward to working with my present group of divers, as well as recruiting new ones for building a strong future. I am also looking forward to working with my new team of staff and administration. With a lot of hard work, determination, and a strong, winning attitude, I am confident that the San Jose State diving team can accomplish whatever goals we set out for."
"Brian has a tremendous resume, highlighted by his close working relationship with Rick Schavone, head coach of Stanford Diving," said Hopkins. "His presence at Stanford has allowed him to work with many world-class divers in a high-profile setting. This on-deck experience, combined with his competitive diving ability and involvement with USA Diving, will make him a tremendous asset to the program, and will have an immediate impact on our recruiting efforts."
Special thanks to San Jose State for contributing this report.