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Eddie Reese's ability to train his athletes technically has been a big part of his success but his unique approach to swimming and training may be his best attribute. That combination is what makes Reese one of the world's finest coaches, regardless of sport. He possesses a thorough knowledge of swimming fundamentals, an eye for talent, a genuine care for his athletes, and the ability to communicate and motivate.

Eddie Reese has established a tradition of excellence at the University of Texas and set the standard in collegiate swimming through his 46 years in Austin. A three-time United States Men's Olympic Team head coach, Reese is the winningest coach in the sport's history with 15 NCAA team titles, a figure that also positions Texas as the winningest NCAA Division I Men's Swimming and Diving program.


Reese's style has been the staple of the Longhorns program. Always calm, unflappable, amiable and quick with a joke, he is a man who likes to work hard but doesn't see why hard work must be dull. His Texas teams reflected the coach's personality. It is a loose bunch, but the team knows when to buckle down. In fact, Reese contends that his championship teams have excelled because they outworked everybody else.


At Texas, team success derives from individual accomplishments. For Reese, the individual swimmers have priority. "I've always worried about the individual first," Reese said. "We don't talk about winning the NCAA Championship. We talk about what it takes for each individual to get better. What satisfies me as a coach is seeing people go faster than they ever have before. With that focus, we are in a battle for the championship every year. I like that, too."

Reese came to Texas after a remarkable six-year rebuilding job at Auburn University. When he took the job at Auburn in 1972, he inherited a team that had not qualified a single swimmer for the finals or consolation finals of the Southeastern Conference Championships during the previous season. Six years later, the Tigers had produced four consecutive Top 10 showings at the NCAAs, culminating in a second-place finish in 1978.  Prior to this he was a standout swimmer at the University of Florida where he graduated in 1963 and started his coaching career as an assistant coach.  

Reese and his wife, Elinor, have two daughters and four grandchildren.  Eddie is also an avid fisher and hunter.

  • Head Olympic Coach 3 times

  • 35 Olympians winning 44 gold medals

  • University of Texas recently retired after 46 seasons

  • NCAA Team Champion 15 times

Eddie Reese

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