Louisville Hires Aaron Bell as Associate Swimming & Diving Coach

aaron bell louisville

Louisville Hires Aaron Bell as Associate Coach

On Tuesday, the University of Louisville announced the hiring of Aaron Bell as an associate coach.

Bell comes to Louisville from the University of Notre Dame swimming and diving program where he served as associate head coach from 2016-21.

“I have known Aaron for some time and I have always admired his recruiting efforts and his coaching,” said UofL head coach Arthur Albiero in a university statement. “His proven track record as premier distance coach is well-documented in his long coaching career. I am thrilled to welcome Aaron and his family to our program.”

In his time with the Irish, Bell’s recruiting efforts moved Notre Dame up in national recruiting class rankings. His work with the Irish men helped contributed to a 29-12 dual meet record over his tenure, also helping the women to a 40-6 dual meet record. Thirty-four Notre Dame swimmers have earned outright All-American status during Bell’s tenure, with multiple others receiving honorable mention recognition.

Bell has served as a lead coach to multiple notable distance swimmers, including All-American Zach Yeadon, a two-time ACC Champion who represented Team USA at the World University Games and was a member of the USA National Team, program record holder in the 500, 1000 and 1650 Free. ACC Freshman of the year Jack Hoagland was an All-American at NCAA’s in 2021 and also the ACC Swimmer of the Meet in 2021, where he won three events at the 2021 ACC Championships (500 free, 400 IM and 1650 free).

“Words cannot express my appreciation for Josh Heird and Arthur Albiero giving me this opportunity,” said Bell. “My family and I are beyond excited to join one of the most recognizable programs in the NCAA and on the world stage. Louisville is a worldwide destination with world class coaches and has the most comprehensive athletic department I have seen. The future is brighter than ever and I cannot wait to get started. L’s up!”

Bell also served as the lead coach for Aaron Schultz, who was a four-year NCAA qualifier and school record holder in the 200 fly. Sadler McKeen was a two-year NCAA Qualifier and individual qualifier in the 200 free under Bell and Lindsay Stone set the school marks in the 500, 1000, and 1650 free under his tutelage.

Prior to his stint with the Irish, Bell served as the head assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for Virginia Tech from 2011-14 and the associate head coach and recruiting coordinator from 2014-16. The Hokies experienced success during Bell’s five years with the program, as the men’s squad finished in the top four at the ACC Championships all five times, including bringing home an ACC team title in 2014 and a pair of runner-up finishes in 2012 and 2013.

Meanwhile, the Hokie women’s team placed in the top five each year and posted a runner-up showing in 2013. For their efforts, the Virginia Tech coaching staff earned two ACC Men’s Coaching Staff of the Year awards in 2012 and 2014. At the NCAA Championships, both teams scored points each year, with the men securing four top-20 finishes and the women claiming four top-25 showings.

At Virginia Tech, 72 student-athletes qualified for the NCAA Championships in addition to 24 Olympic Trial qualifiers with Bell on staff. Additionally, he coached Katarina Filova (Slovakia) who advanced to the 2012 London Olympics, while Fiona Donnelly (Scotland) who participated at the 2014 Commonwealth Games and Michal Szuba (Poland) who swam at the 2013 World University Games and 2015 World Championships.

A combined 79 school records and four ACC marks fell while Bell coached in Blacksburg. On the recruiting trail, he helped bring in four consecutive top-20 classes. In the classroom, the Hokies boasted 35 all-ACC Academic Team selections, 40 ACC Honor Roll members and three ACC Scholar-Athletes of the Year (Brandon Fiala ’16, Heather Savage ’13 & Logan Shinholser ’12).

Before heading to Blacksburg, Bell served as the assistant swimming coach & recruiting coordinator at the University at Buffalo from 2007-10 before earning a promotion to head assistant coach and recruiting coordinator from 2010-11. During his tenure with the Bulls, the men’s team claimed four top-three finishes – including a team championship in 2011 – at the Mid-American Conference Championships. For their efforts, the Bulls coaching staff earned MAC Coach of the Year honors three times (2009-11).

Other previous coaching experiences include serving as both a graduate assistant (2004-06) and volunteer assistant (2007) at Ohio and serving as the head assistant coach at the University of Miami (2006).

Bell had a standout career at Clarion University in Clarion, Pennsylvania, earning 20 All-America scrolls at the Division II institution. He was a senior national qualifier in 2003 and 2004 and left school as the program record holder in the 100 and 200 back. In 1999, Bell earned the prestigious Kelly Cup Award, which goes to the Pennsylvania Amateur Athlete of the Year. He’s a member of USA Swimming and the College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA).

Bell graduated from Clarion with a bachelor of science in liberal studies in May 2004. He then completed the prestigious coaching education program through Ohio’s School of Recreation & Sport Sciences department in June 2007.

Bell and his wife, Courtney have two sons, Brody and Landon and a daughter, Lucy.

The above is courtesy of a press release from Louisville Athletics. 

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