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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Wildcat alum Chitwood named assistant coach for LSU swimming

Arizona Daily Wildcat File Photo

Less than a year after graduating from Arizona, former Wildcat swimmer Cory Chitwood was named LSU’s newest assistant coach this season, at the young age of 23. He described it as a dream come true.

“It’s really exciting,” Chitwood said. “This is my life dream. I definitely can’t wait to get out there. I want this to be my career, and I’m looking forward to being a swim coach now and in the future.”

As a Wildcat, Chitwood enjoyed great success in the pool, earning three individual national championships in the 200 backstroke between 2010 and 2012, and acting as Arizona’s team captain from the start of the 2010 season until his graduation.

He was named Arizona’s Male Senior Athlete of the Year at the conclusion of the 2011-12 season.

“Cory is a good guy,” head coach Eric Hansen said. “He always worked hard as a collegiate swimmer, and his success showed that. I think he is going to learn a lot in his first year coaching. He is going to do a great job in college swimming and I wish him only success.”

During his collegiate career, Chitwood was honored as an All-American 14 times and was placed on the Pac-10/12’s All-Academic team every year he competed.

“I had a great time swimming with Cory,” junior Giles Smith said.

“He was an amazing captain, awesome leader and great friend. I tried to follow his example a lot and he was definitely a person I looked up to a lot. He really was the perfect example of an Arizona Wildcat swimmer.”

Growing up in Union, Ky., Chitwood avidly followed Southeastern Conference sports as a child.

“I’m always a Wildcat at heart,” Chitwood said. “I was lucky enough to attend a great university and have many amazing memories there. It helped me acquire this job opportunity and I can’t thank Arizona enough. However, I was raised in Kentucky and grew up with SEC. The conference is part of my childhood and it’s what I’m used to. Being a part of the SEC has always been one of my fantasies.”

Brandy Collins, current assistant coach at the UA, worked at LSU as assistant coach for the past two seasons before returning to Arizona this year. At LSU, she worked hard to help rejuvenate the swimming programs in the SEC and NCAA.

Since his graduation last year, Chitwood has been working for his childhood swim club, the Northern Kentucky Clippers. At LSU, Chitwood joins assistants Jeanna Fuccillo and Clemson’s former head coach, Christopher Ip, where they will try to raise LSU’s swimming program to the next level.

“It’s an amazing conference,” Chitwood said. “The athletic department is really top notch there. It’s going to be a lot of fun.”

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