|Title:||Head Swimming & Diving Coach|
|Hometown:||Northern Illinois, 1997|
Swimming and Diving Head Coach Matt Anderson has consistently improved the Youngstown State program both in and out of the pool as he enters his 10th year with the Penguins. At the 2012 Horizon League Championships, YSU set a school mark for points at the meet with 364.
In Anderson's nine seasons, the program has experienced unprecedented success since its rebirth in 1996. With his guidance, the Penguins have achieved their highest finish ever at the Horizon League Championship, won five individual conference championships and currently own 21 school records (only three still exist from when he arrived in the fall of 2003). YSU has had 28 top-five finishes at the league meet since he took over prior to the 2003-04 campaign.
Outside of the pool, YSU's team grade-point average has consistently been around 3.25 for the entire year. The past three squads have had exception GPAs at 3.37 in 2008-09, 3.42 in 2009-10 and 3.36 in 2010-11. Each squad has recieved Academic All-Amecica status by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America.
The team's grade-point average has also ranked among the top of YSU's programs. Thirteen times student-athletes earned Academic All-Horizon League honors, including a best of three in 2010-11.
The program has twice been the athletic department's recipient of the Horizon League Outreach Award. The Penguins most recently received the accolade in 2011 and previously earned it in 2004.
In the water, the 2012 performance at the league meet was the best in school history. The Penguins had eight top-10 finishes on the final day of the meet en route to scoring 364 points.
Freshman Ashley Dow became the first YSU swimmer to win an individual Horizon League Championship since 2004. Dow won the 100-yard backstroke with a school and conference record time of 54.83 seconds, an NCAA B cut qualifying mark. Dow was second in the 200-yard back. During the league championships, YSU set four school swimming marks.
Anderson has also worked to keep Beeghly Natatorium a top-notch facility. Recently, the entire pool has been resurfaced, a new filtration system has been installed and complete renovations to the lighting and sound systems have been completed. Also, upgrades to the locker room and coaches offices have been completed.
At the 2011 Horizon League Championships, the Penguins scored a then-school-best 308.5 points in the meet. YSU had six top-six finishers and a total of 22 placings that scored points. At the meet, individuals set four school marks and four of the five relay marks were broken as well.
Hill won the three-meter diving championship, the first in her career, while Samantha Roberts was fourth in the 100 breaststroke and fifth in the 200 event.
At the 2010 Horizon League Championships, Nishani Cicilson placed fifth in the 50-yard freestyle and Roberts finished fifth in the 200 breaststroke. On the diving side, Hill was fourth in both the one and three-meter competitions.
At the 2009 league meet, YSU used a strong final day push to finish fifth for the third straight year. The Penguins finished with a school-record 300 points led by four top-five finishers. Distance swimmer Olivia Arnold was third in the 1,650 and fifth in the 1,000. Ashley Williamson was fourth in the 100-yard butterfly while Megan Rupe placed fifth in the 100 freestyle.
Arnold led the charge for the Penguins throughout the year. For her efforts, during the year and in her career, she became the first swimmer to be named the YSU/The Vindicator Female Student-Athlete of the Year.
It is a stark contrast to the days prior to Anderson taking over the helm before the 2003-04 season. Only three YSU swimming records had been set from 1996 through 2002. YSU also finished last in its two years in the Horizon League by an average of nearly 25 points before Anderson arrived.
In 2008, the Penguins scored 295 points and placing fifth out of eight teams. That was a 42.5-point increase from their finish in the 2007 season.
The team broke nine school records at the 2008 Horizon League Championships, including the 400 freestyle relay, which had stood for 24 years. Ashley Williamson broke the 100 fly record that had stood since 1985, placing second at the championship. Fourty-one personal-best times were posted at the meet and 36 new entries were made to YSU's top 10 performers list. During the regular season, YSU defeated Horizon League opponents Butler in a double-dual meet and Cleveland State in a double-dual meet.
At the 2007 Horizon League Championships, YSU got a strong effort from its freestylers to vault ahead of Cleveland State into fifth place on the final day. The two squads were tied before YSU outscored the Vikings 86-52 in the final day.
The Penguins had outstanding individual efforts that led to the breaking of two school records that had stood for more than 20 years. Brittany Senn, Rupe, Leigh Bareman and Jessica Front teamed up to break the 200 freestyle relay record that had stood since 1986, and Becky Bertuzzi topped the 24-year-old school record in the 200 free in her final collegiate meet. YSU also defeated Horizon League opponents Cleveland State twice and Butler once in dual meets during the year.
In his third year, Anderson led a young squad to an impressive list of individual accomplishments. The team was small in number coming off the loss of 10 seniors from the previous campaign, but the Penguins were still competitive and defeated in-state and conference rival Cleveland State in a dual meet for the first time since joining the Horizon League in 2001.
Arnold set the school record in the 1,000 free as a freshman, and she posted times that rank her as the second-fastest swimmer in the 500 and 1,650, which she would later set school marks in. As a team, 29 new individual entries and nine relay entries were added to YSU's top-10 all-time performers list by the end of the season.
The 2004-05 season saw the culmination of one of YSU's best-ever recruiting classes as 10 seniors competed in their final seasons. In two years under Anderson's leadership, that group went on to break nine school records and win three individual crowns at the league meet.
At the 2005 Horizon League Championship, Julia Darling broke the school record in both breaststroke events and had two top-10 finishes. She also swam the breaststroke leg of both of YSU's record-setting medley relays at the meet. One of those relays - the 200 medley relay - broke a mark that was set in 1984.
Erin Carter was part of two record-breaking relays. Individually, she finished fourth in the 400 IM and added a fifth-place finish in the 200 fly. Jordan Dunn also broke two records at the conference meet. On the first day of the Championship, she broke a 22-year-old record in the 1,000 free. She then broke a 19-year-old record on the meet's final day in the 1,650-free.
Diver Kalyn Leveto also culminated her career by winning the individual conference crown in the one-meter board and qualified for the NCAA Zone C Championship for the fourth time in her career.
In Anderson's first year in 2003-04, the Penguins picked up their first ever victory against a Horizon League opponent.
Anderson earned his first career victory as a head coach against Radford on Oct. 26, 2003, as the Penguins won the final four events of the meet to top the Highlanders 153-143. On Feb. 8, 2004, YSU earned its first-ever victory over a Horizon League opponent as it defeated the Butler Bulldogs 86-51 in a quadrangular that also featured Wright State and Xavier.
The Penguins carried the momentum from their Horizon League victory against the Bulldogs into the conference championships to place sixth, the best finish in school history at that point. Carter became the first Penguin swimmer to capture an individual crown at the Horizon League Championship, and Leveto defended her title in three-meter diving to earn Horizon League Diver-of-the-Year honors for the second-straight season.
Anderson, who is the ninth head coach in the program's history, came to YSU from Ohio State where he was an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for four years. He also oversaw the sprint groups for Head Coach Jeanne Fleck, helped run camps, coordinated travel plans, was a key office assistant and was the program's academic adviser. In each of his years, the team's grade-point average increased and was as high as 3.36 in 2002. Also, more than 45 athletes were named OSU Scholar-Athletes and more than 30 were academic All-Big Ten selections.
Before joining the OSU staff, Anderson was the top assistant for the men's and women's programs at Northern Illinois University. At NIU, he spent two years as a full-time assistant developing and coaching all aspects of the Huskies' middle distance swimmers. He served as the program's recruiting and travel coordinator and was in charge of swimming camps and fund raising for the program.
Anderson first became involved in coaching from 1994-97 as a volunteer assistant coach at NIU following his swimming career. From 1990-94, he was a three-time letterwinner for the Huskies, earning the team's most improved swimmer award as a sophomore and being named team captain as a senior.
He earned his bachelor's degree in physical education from NIU In 1997.
Anderson is certified as a member of the College Swimming Coaches Association, a member of the American Swim Coaches Association and a member of United States Swimming.