April 12, 2016
Mike Litzinger (pronounced LITZ-ing-er), hired last April as head coach of the University of Notre Dame women’s swimming program, will assume coaching responsibilities for both the Irish men’s and women’s teams effective immediately as the University elects to combine its two swimming and diving operations.
University vice president and athletics director Jack Swarbrick made the announcement today.
In addition to coaching the Irish women’s team in 2015-16, Litzinger also handled the Notre Dame men’s program on an interim basis after Irish men’s coach Matt Tallman took a leave of absence beginning in December.
“Although unexpected, the opportunity to operate a combined program during the past several months led us to conclude that this would be the best model for us going forward ,” said Swarbrick.
“All the other Atlantic Coast Conference swimming programs are combined ventures, so we are also comfortable this will be a success from a scheduling, practice, competition and recruiting standpoint. We are committed to working with Mike to create a structure that will serve both the men’s and women’s squads well.”
Both the Irish men’s and women’s teams finished seventh at their respective 2016 ACC Championships.
Litzinger was a veteran of 14 seasons as a head coach in men’s and women’s swimming and diving and a key member of the University of North Carolina men’s and women’s swimming staff for eight years before coming to Notre Dame.
Litzinger brought with him to South Bend the experience of seven years as head coach of both the men’s and women’s programs at the University of Utah (2000-07) and seven more as head women’s coach at St. Bonaventure University (1989-1996). He had been the associate head coach at North Carolina beginning in 2011 after first joining the Tar Heel staff in 2007. After leaving St. Bonaventure and before going to Utah, Litzinger was the assistant men’s coach at Ohio State from 1996-2000. He began his coaching career at Fredonia State University in New York in 1988-89.
A 1984 graduate of Hobart College in Geneva, New York, Litzinger received his bachelor’s degree in English and was captain of the Hobart swimming team in 1983-84. The same year he was voted the program’s most valuable swimmer. In 1988, he received his master’s degree in physical education from the University of Iowa. While working on his master’s degree, Litzinger was the Hawkeyes’ graduate assistant men’s swimming coach. The New York native and his wife Julie have two daughters–Gabrielle and Grace.