Greg Rhodenbaugh Takes SMU Head Coaching Position

Greg Rhodenbaugh (center) will become the head coach at SMU. Photo Courtesy: Peter H. Bick

Former SMU head coach and All-American Greg Rhodenbaugh returns to the Hilltop to lead the men’s swimming program, Athletics Director Rick Hart announced Thursday. Rhodenbaugh served as head coach during the 1988-89 season after serving as an assistant and swam for the Mustangs from 1980-84.

As a coach, he led the Mustangs to a runner-up finish at the 1989 Southwest Conference Championships, earning Co-Coach of the Year honors, and guided SMU to a 14th-place finish at the NCAA Championships.

“We are excited to bring an alum home to the Hilltop to lead our men’s swimming program,” said Hart. “As a former student-athlete and coach here, Greg understands the rich history and tradition of SMU Swimming, and is committed to helping us return our program to an elite national level. We welcome Greg, his wife Lisa, an SMU alumna, and their family back to Dallas.”

“I am so excited to be back on the Hilltop, and I am honored to be coaching the Mustangs again,” said Rhodenbaugh. “I believe that SMU is one of the premier Universities in the world, and it provides such an incredible opportunity for its student-athletes to excel. With SMU’s new Robson and Lindley Aquatics Center and its rich athletic tradition, the Ponies are poised to regain their place as a swimming powerhouse. As an alumnus and former coach, I look forward to helping the program grow and the student-athletes flourish. One of the main reasons I got into coaching was to help position young people for success and prepare them for life after college. SMU did that for me and now I can pay that forward. I would like to thank SMU and Rick Hart for allowing me to fulfill my dream of returning to my alma mater and training the Mustangs.”

Rhodenbaugh most recently served as the head coach at Missouri, a position he took over in May of 2010. During his time at Mizzou, Rhodenbaugh drastically increased the Tigers’ presence on the National stage. Overall, Rhodenbaugh’s tenure with the Tigers saw 23 women earn 124 All-America honors, while 23 men picked up 103. As a team, the men posted the top six NCAA finishes in school history, while the women made it seven.

In just his second season, he led the Mizzou men to a 19th-place finish at the 2012 NCAA Championships, its highest ever, an improved to 14th in 2013. That season, the Tigers produced their first NCAA individual All-American since 1979 and their first All-American relay in program history.

In 2014, the men posted a program-record 95 points at the National event, garnering four First-Team All-America honors, while the women picked up their first individual All-America honor for a freshman since 1978.

Success continued for both programs during the 2014-15 season, with record setting performances at the NCAA Championships. Both teams turned in top-15 finishes, with the men coming in 11th and the women 14th. The men posted five top-seven finishes, while earning six individual and four relay All-America nods. For the first time in school history, two of the women’s relays earned All-America honors, including a program record in the 400 medley relay.

Rhodenbaugh guided Mizzou’s first individual National Champion in program history, Fabian Schwingenschlogl, to victory in the 100-yard breaststroke at the 2016 Championships. In total, six men and women earned All-America accolades helping the men to an eighth-place finish and the women to 11th that year.

The teams held steady the next season as the men finished within the country’s top 10 again at ninth, and the women were 13th. The 2018 Championships saw the Mizzou women finish 15th, earning five total individual All-America honors as well as three relay accolades.

Prior to his time at Mizzou, Rhodenbaugh served as an assistant at Arizona under Frank Busch, helping both the men and women to 2008 NCAA National Championships.

Rhodenbaugh has also served as a member of both the U.S. Swimming National Team and U.S. National Junior Team staffs. He mentored two-time Olympic Gold Medalist Amanda Beard, as well as Mustang medalists Ryan Berube, Ricardo Prado and Lars Frolander.

During his time at SMU as a student-athlete, Rhodenbaugh earned All-America honors in the 100-yard breaststroke (1983, 1984), 200-yard breaststroke (1983) and as part of the 800-yard freestyle relay (1983, 1984). SMU earned four top-10 NCAA finishes, including runner-up honors in 1983.

In addition to his collegiate swimming success, Rhodenbaugh won the 200-meter breaststroke at the 1982 U.S. National Sports Festival and was a member of the U.S. team at the 1983 World University Games in Canada.

Rhodenbaugh and wife Lisa, also a graduate of SMU, have eight children.

— The above press release was posted by Swimming World in conjunction with SMU Athletics. For press releases and advertising inquiries please contact


  1. avatar

    Outstanding, good luck Greg!

  2. avatar
    Dave Ross

    Can’t wait to see how the program flourishes. Congrats. Well-deserved.

  3. avatar
    Kurt W

    Most excellent news. Congrats Greg and SMU!

  4. Kerri Carlton

    Congratulations Coach Rhodenbaugh!

  5. avatar

    Awesome news! Congrats Coach Rhodenbaugh! I know being back “at home” at SMU is going to be awesome for all of you!! SMU is fortunate to have you come back!!! Best of Luck!

  6. avatar

    Outstanding…Welcome home
    Buck P 76