Bob Bowman introduced as new ASU swim head coach, will bring Phelps to Tempe

Bowman brings a notable name to ASU swimming and is ready to take on the challenge.

Bob Bowman, one of the biggest names in swimming, was introduced as the new ASU swim head coach on Friday at Karsten Golf Course. 

Although ASU swim and dive is not a historically prominent program, ASU athletic director Ray Anderson said he saw a glimmer of hope to bring in Bowman. He thanked staff members and Dr. Michael Crow.

"Dr. Crow really insists that we put no limits on our aspirations when we're out looking for the best available," he said. "To have that authority to go out and seek renowned and world-class coaches is really a tribute to Dr. Crow. If we discover a coach who may have a mutual interest, as far-reaching as that person may seem to ASU...if we see a chance to entice him, we're going to go get him."

Bowman said he highly respects Anderson, noting that it only took one meeting for him to get a sense of the commitment to excellence. 

"I am very much about excellence...I'm so happy to be here in a program that has so much support of the administration," he said. "I look forward to bringing many other athletes and students to this school. When I looked seriously at the potential of this program, it's clear that this can be a great story. It could be a model for others to follow."

In addition to Phelps, Bowman expects many other Olympic athletes of his to join the team in Tempe.

Bowman coached 22-time Olympic medalist (18 gold) Michael Phelps, who is training for Rio 2016. He said Friday that among other Olympians he coaches, Phelps will be joining him in Tempe.

"If we're going to recruit the top athletes, every one of those want to swim in the Olympics," Bowman said. "They need to know they have a vehicle for doing that and this is a perfect opportunity to demonstrate that."

In addition, Bowman has been the CEO and head coach at North Baltimore Aquatic Club since Sept. 2008. Although he will continue coaching the Olympians up until Rio, he will leave his position on the aquatic club's board. 

However, his last coaching job at the college level was at the University of Michigan, where he was the head swimming coach from 2005-08. He said he could not wait to get back into the collegiate atmosphere.

"I'm very exciting about coaching men and women," he said. "I like the balance of that and it actually brings more resources. When you have both, it's more attractive to recruits."

Bowman will start working at ASU full-time in August, but will put a full-time staff together to work with the team throughout the summer. 

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