Auburn Names Alum Ryan Wochomurka as New Head Coach

Nov. 21 - North Texas vs Houston NCAA Women's Swim Dive (Joe Buvid / For Houston Athletics)
Ryan Wochomurka; Photo Courtesy: Joe Buvid/Courtesy of Houston Athletics

Auburn Friday announced the hiring of Ryan Wochomurka as the school’s new head swimming and diving coach, tasking the alumnus with leading the Tigers back to glory.

Wochomurka was a 21-time All-American at Auburn from 2002-05, winning three national championships with the Tigers. The U.S. national teamer has proven himself a strong head coach in six seasons at the University of Houston, leading the Cougars to five consecutive American Athletic Conference women’s titles.

Oct. 3 - Tulane vs Houston NCAA Women's Swimming & Diving (Joe Buvid / For Houston Athletics)

Ryan Wochomurka; Photo Courtesy: Joe Buvid/Couretsy of houston Athletics

“My family and I are honored and humbled for the opportunity to serve as the head coach at Auburn University,” Wochomurka said in a university statement. “I am very thankful to Mr. Allen Greene, President Gogue, the Board of Trustees, and our proud alumni for the opportunity to lead our Auburn men and women in the pool. It is hard to truly encapsulate into words the impact that Auburn Swimming and Diving has had on my life, and we will strive tirelessly to the very best of our ability to provide the same incredible Auburn experience to our current student-athletes that has shaped the lives of so many that have come before. The rich history and tradition of this program is second to none, and we have an incredible opportunity to stand on the shoulders of giants as we look to the future. ‘I believe in Auburn and love it.’ WAR EAGLE!”

Wochomurka was named the AAC women’s swimming coach of the year each of those years, from 2017-21. His final award at this year’s championships included producing the co-AAC swimmers of the year (Mykenzie Leehy and Ioanna Sacha) and the freshman of the year (Laura Garcia-Marin). Three Houston swimmers and one diver represented the school at the NCAA Championships. Houston scored nine points at NCAAs, the most for the program since 2011 and the most among non-power conference schools in 2021, finishing in 30th place

“We are thrilled to announce Ryan Wochomurka as the new leader of our swimming and diving program,” Auburn athletic director Allen Greene said. “Ryan’s proven to be an effective communicator and relationship builder, resulting in exceptional recruiting and the development of championship teams as the head coach at the University of Houston. In addition, his achievements as a 21-time All-American and three-time national champion swimmer at Auburn, and the respect he’s earned within the collegiate swimming community, uniquely qualified this Auburn man to lead his alma mater. We’re delighted to welcome Ryan, Leigh, Hayes and Hallie back to the Plains.”

Before being hired by Houston, Wochomurka spent eight seasons as an assistant at Louisville, rising to become the recruiting coordinator and associate head coach for the men’s team. He helped them win a pair of Big East men’s titles, three Big East women’s titles and a sweep of both crowns at the 2014 AAC championships.

Auburn has fallen far from its perch as one of the nation’s top programs. The men were dominant in the early 2000s, winning six of their eight NCAA titles over a seven-year stretch from 2003-09. The women’s team won five of six national titles from 2002 to 2007. Auburn has won 18 men’s SEC titles (the last in 2012) and five women’s titles (last in 2008), mostly under the tutelage of David Marsh, then Richard Quick.

Gary Taylor was hired in 2018 as the program’s eighth head coach, but he was let go after a 2021 season in which both Auburn squads failed to score at NCAAs. The Auburn men finished eighth at SECs. The women were ninth.