Dave Salo Announces This is His Last Season as Southern Cal Head Coach

Dave Salo announced this will be his last season as the head coach at the University of Southern California. Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Southern California head coach Dave Salo announced that he will stepping down as head coach of the Trojans undergrad team and that this will be his last season. Salo said he will continue to coach the various Olympic hopeful swimmers at Trojan Swim Club through the 2020 Olympic Games.

Salo had been coaching the Trojans undergrad team since the fall of 2006 when he took over for Mark Schubert. After a rocky first four years in Los Angeles, he guided the men of Troy to seven top ten finishes in nine years, reaching as high as fourth in 2013 and 2015.

In his 12 years as head coach of the women’s team, they finished in the top ten a total of ten times, finishing as high as third in 2011 and 2012.

“After thoughtful consideration and discussion with several key people in my life, this 2019-2020 season as USC’s head coach will be my last,” Salo said in a press release from USC. “Following the NCAA Championships I will remain at USC, turning my undivided attention to the preparation of my athletes for the Tokyo Olympic Games. Beyond the Games I will continue my work with the Novaquatics Swim Club and with opportunities that have been presented. I also plan to put in a lot more work on improving my fade-away jumper.

“I have spent one third of my life at USC, as a grad student, assistant men’s coach and now as head coach. I will always be proud of the time spent here with the many people that make USC special. I will always reserve a most special place in my heart for the student-athletes and my staff who I hope I have served well. Going forward, I am excited about the future for the USC swimming and diving program with some great talent joining the team in the next few years.”


Dave Salo announces heats at the 2013 Junior Nationals. Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Dave Salo won a combined 22 NCAA individual and six relay titles with the likes of Katinka Hosszu, Vladimir Morozov, Louise Hansson and Rebecca Soni. His 2015 men’s team won the program’s first Pac-12 championship since 1979 and the 2016 women’s team won that program’s first-ever Pac-12 title as he was named the Pac-12 Coach of the Year.

During his time at USC, he also was the head coach of the United States women’s team at the 2013 and 2015 World Championships, and the head men’s coach at the 2018 World Short Course Championships. He also served as an assistant on the US team at the 2012 Olympic Games while he was head coach at USC.

Dave Salo’s Individual NCAA Champions at USC

  • Rebecca Soni, 5
  • Katinka Hosszu, 5
  • Haley Anderson, 3
  • Louise Hansson, 3
  • Larsen Jensen, 2
  • Vladimir Morozov, 2
  • Cristian Quintero, 2

Salo’s Relay NCAA Champions at USC

  • Men’s 400 Free Relay, 2013
  • Men’s 800 Free Relay, 2014
  • Men’s 800 Free Relay, 2015
  • Men’s 400 Free Relay, 2015
  • Women’s 400 free relay, 2016
  • Men’s 200 Medley Relay, 2018

Before coming to USC, he was the head coach of the Irvine Novaquatics from 1990 to 2006, where he coached Olympic champions Lenny Krayzelburg, Aaron Peirsol, Amanda Beard and Jason Lezak. All four of those swimmers have been inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame. He was the 2002 U.S. Swimming Coach of the Year.

He was a USC assistant under Peter Daland for five seasons (1986-90).

Last year, Dave Salo’s USC women were 10th at the NCAA Championships and the men placed 20th.

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4 years ago

Did he resign or was he asked to leave?

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