Former Sun Devil dives back into ASU

Herbie Behm, an ASU alumnus, is back to coach the ASU swim and dive teams

The saying "Sun Devil for life" is currently proving true at the Mona Plummer Aquatic Complex. A recent hire by swim head coach Bob Bowman has brought back Herbie Behm as an assistant coach.

Behm is an ASU alumnus who graduated in 2013. Before his collegiate career, Behm was a national record holder and a high school state champion. He brought his talents to ASU and continued to be a standout as a swimmer, earning a Pac-12 honorable mention during his time with the program. 

Yet, his days by the pool didn't end there.

Behm began to build an impressive coaching resume once his time in the water came to a close. Finally on the other side of the starting block, the Arizona native gathered experience coaching at every level, from general age groups to collegiate, and even nationally when he coached both the USA and Puerto Rican national swim teams. 

Before returning to ASU, Behm coached at the University of Utah for two seasons. However, he said that coming back home was the right move. 

"It feels like the best decision I could've ever made," Behm said. "Coming back home is awesome and seeing how quickly things have changed for the better is very cool."

Sophomore freestyler Grant House said Behm is right at home with the developing program.

"He has fit in phenomenally so far. We had open arms when he came in," House said. "I really enjoy him so far, and it's a huge step forward for our program this year." 

Even in the preseason, it seems that the ASU swim and dive teams have made nothing but steps forward. Throughout the practices since he has been in Tempe, Behm has seen that exemplified already. 

"Everyone has the same vision," Behm said. "It's a lot of different personalities with the same driving force behind them. Everyone is on board with getting to that high standard."

Behm contributes to the teams' goals of getting to the top of the conference standings through his analytical coaching style. Using statistics and numbers to push the swimmers has always been a key to his coaching success, and he credits garnering an interest in the subject to the Statistics 101 course he took at ASU. 

"We are excited to welcome Herbie Behm back home to Tempe," said Bowman in Behm's introductory press release. "His data-driven, technique-focused approach will help not only our speed group but the entire team ... His extensive club experience in Arizona will be a tremendous asset for us moving forward."

Besides being analytical, Behm is a thoughtful coach, which House greatly appreciates as a swimmer.

"He doesn't say anything he doesn't mean or doesn't want to happen. He puts a lot of thought into everything he shows and teaches us," House said. "He doesn't waste his time or our time. He gets right to the point."

Behm hopes to continue his coaching career with ASU in the years to come, and his athletes hope so too. 

"I think he fits the ASU mold perfectly," House said. "I full-heartedly intend on staying here myself, and I hope he's there with me every step of the way. I think we can make something spectacular happen with this program and he's a huge part of that."

The men's team dives into their season on Sept. 28 with the Maroon & Gold Intrasquad Scrimmage at 3 p.m. MST in Tempe.

Reach the reporter at or follow @kellydoyle06 on Twitter. 

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