Head Men's Diving Coach
Now in his 41st year as a diving coach in 2018-19, Caiming Xie has helped his protégés win conference titles, All-America honors and gold medals. A proven winner, Caiming’s experience reaches all over the world, with 2018-19 marking his 24th season as head women’s and men’s diving coach at Notre Dame.
During his tenure with the women’s program, he has molded four of the top divers ever to compete for the Irish – Jenny Chiang, Heather Mattingly, Meghan Perry-Eaton and Natalie Stitt – who combined for 12 BIG EAST titles, 10 appearances in the NCAA Championships, 10 All-America or honorable mention All-America citations and five BIG EAST Most Outstanding Diver awards. One of the foursome holds all of the Notre Dame and Rolfs Aquatics Center diving records minus the school’s platform score (Lindsey Streepey) and held both of the BIG EAST diving marks before the Irish moved to the Atlantic Coast Conference in 2013-14.
For his efforts, Caiming, the first full-time diving coach in Notre Dame history, was named the BIG EAST’s top women’s diving coach on five occasions, claiming the honor in 1999, 2004, 2005, 2009 and 2013. In addition, Caiming won men’s diving coach of the year five times to give him 10 total during Notre Dame’s run in the BIG EAST from 1996-2013.
Most recently, Caiming coached Jenny Chiang to a career sweep in the 3-meter dive at the BIG EAST Championships from 2010-13. Chiang topped off her career in 2013 by earning BIG EAST Most Outstanding Diver honors at the league meet before claiming honorable mention All-America accolades in the 3-meter discipline at the NCAA championships one year after finishing 17th on the 1-meter boards, just one spot away from honorable mention All-America honors.
Before Chiang, Natalie Stitt won the 2009 BIG EAST Championships Most Outstanding Diver honor as Stitt swept the 1- and 3-meter events at the league meet. She went on to compete at the NCAA Championships in both events.
In 2006, Caiming molded two women’s divers into all-BIG EAST performers in the 3-meter event, as Lucy Hirt was the runner up while her teammate, Tara Hyer, placed third in the same event at the BIG EAST Championships. For his efforts, Caiming captured his fourth BIG EAST Coach of the Year Award. Just two seasons later, Hyer was third off the 3-meter board at the league meet while Natalie Stitt claimed the title in that event and placed third off the 1-meter board.
From 2003-05, Perry-Eaton turned in the most impressive two-year stretch ever by an Irish diver, as she was beaten just one time during the regular season before sweeping the springboard events at the 2004 and 2005 BIG EAST Championships en route to being tabbed the meet’s top diver.
Perry-Eaton was the first Notre Dame diver ever to win a title at the NCAA Zone C Championships in 2004, taking first off the 1-meter board. At the NCAA Championships, she delivered the then-highest ever finish for a Notre Dame swimmer or diver, taking third in that event, ending up just 3.30 points behind the national champion to become an All-American. She followed up with a fifth-place finish in 1-meter diving at the 2005 NCAA meet.
In 2002-03, Perry-Eaton became the first Notre Dame diver – and first non-University of Miami diver since 1996 – to win a BIG EAST championship, placing first in the 1-meter competition. She also was second on the 3-meter board and was named the BIG EAST’s top diver – her first of three consecutive diver-of-the-year awards. Perry-Eaton then qualified for the NCAA Championships, where she placed ninth in the 1-meter event and 20th on the 3-meter board to earn honorable mention All-America honors.
Mattingly was the first Irish diver to earn All-America honors, as she was a four-time honorable mention selection before being named an All-American in 3-meter action in 2002 with an eighth-place finish. Mattingly was the first Notre Dame diver to qualify for the NCAA Division I Championships, and she earned bids to the meet in each of her four collegiate campaigns. Mattingly also had a great deal of success in the NCAA zone meet, taking second in 1-meter action in 1999, in addition to third-place results in 3-meter competition in both 1999 and 2002.
Before coming to Notre Dame, Caiming was the head diving coach for three years at Toledo, earning Mid-American Conference Diving Coach of the Year laurels in each of his last two seasons. Prior to his stint with the Rockets, Caiming was an assistant coach for the 1991-92 season at Pittsburgh.
Boasting a wealth of international experience on his résumé, Caiming served as the 1980 Chinese Olympic diving coach. He has been a technical consultant for United States Diving since 1994 and has held clinics and presentations for the United States Diving national team.
In 2010 and again in 2012, Caiming was a USA Diving National Team leader and coach at the FINA/NVC Diving World Series.
Caiming also helped coach a United States squad that claimed six medals at the 2009 World University Games in Belgrade, Serbia and again coached at the 2011 World University Games in Shenzhen, China.
The Chinese national team coach from 1977-90, Caiming coached Sun Shu-Wei, a gold medalist in the men’s platform competition at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, Spain, and Zhu Jin- Hong, who finished fourth in the women’s platform in Barcelona. Caiming’s divers also have earned medals at the Asian Games, World Cup, World University Games, and World Championships.
A competitive diver in his own right, Caiming won the springboard competition at the Asian Games in 1974 and earned first place in the platform and second in the springboard competition at the National Games of China in 1975.
A 1985 graduate of the Beijing Institute of Physical Education, he also won numerous Chinese diving championships on the national level.
Caiming and his wife, Ping Tong, have one son, Tong, who graduated from Notre Dame in 2003 after a successful career as an Irish diver.
*Bio contains only information on the women’s team. For information on the men’s squad see Caiming’s bio on the Notre Dame men’s swimming and diving roster page.
THE CAIMING FILE
Head Diving Coach, University of Notre Dame (23 seasons, 1995-present)
1999, 2004, 2005, 2009 and 2013 BIG EAST Women’s Diving Coach of the Year
2006, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2012 BIG EAST Men’s Diving Coach of the Year
Head Diving Coach, University of Toledo (3 seasons, 1992-1995)
1994 and 1995 Mid-American Conference Diving Coach of the Year
Assistant Diving Coach, University of Pittsburgh (1 season, 1991-92)