Hayden Hired as Assistant Coach
July 24, 2013
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Fighting Illini swimming and diving head coach Sue Novitsky announced Wednesday the hiring of Alec Hayden as the new assistant swimming coach. Hayden comes to Illinois from William & Mary, where he spent one season as an assistant coach.
"I am very excited to add Alec to the swimming and diving staff," Novitsky said."Alec will be a great representative for his home state and out recruiting.He brings great enthusiasm and energy with his coaching and has had great success in developing elite athletes.Alec has great technical knowledge and wants to keep learning more to help the student-athletes get faster.He is a smart coach with a coaching philosophy consistent with mine, and I am looking forward to having him in the Illini family."
In just one season at William & Mary, Hayden was the primary coach for swimmers who accomplished four conference records, 32 school records, 20 freshman records and 10 NCAA B cuts. His only recruiting class with the Tribe was the best in program history and included the first top-100 recruit in program history.
At the Colonial Athletic Association Championships, he coached seven individual conference champions and three relay championship teams. Tribe swimmers took home co-Swimmer of the Meet, Rookie of the Year and Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
"I'm very excited to be a new Illini," Hayden said. "There is so much talent on the team, and the school is one of the best institutions in the nation. I can't wait to get on the pool deck and see what we can accomplish."
Prior to joining the staff at William & Mary, Hayden served as the head senior coach for the Nasa Wildcat Aquatics team, which was comprised of 40 high school and eighth-grade swimmers. Under his tutelage, Wildcat swimmers set one national age group record and eight state records. He coached three swimmers who qualified for the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials.
He coached four swimmers to a combined 14 state championships and also coached the 2011 50 freestyle USA Swimming Junior National runner-up. At the 2012 National Club Swimming Association Junior Nationals, he coached the Wildcat boys to an eighth-place national finish and the combined team to a 10th-place finish.
While working with the Nasa Wildcat Aquatics team, Hayden simultaneously worked as a volunteer assistant for Northwestern University. At Northwestern, Hayden worked with both the men's and women's programs, including work with an NCAA Championships finalist, two NCAA consolation finalists and five NCAA qualifiers.
Hayden started his coaching career as an assistant senior coach with Nasa Wildcat Aquatics in April of 2008. Working primarily with the sprint groups, Hayden coached athletes who set one national age group record and 11 state records. He coached three individual state champions and the U.S. Open 100 butterfly runner-up.
As an athlete, Hayden was a four-year letter winner and two-year captain as a member of the Northwestern Wildcats swimming team from 2004-2008. Hayden was an All-American at New Trier High School, and he was also a team captain and four-year All-Conference honoree.
Hayden graduated from Northwestern in June 2008 with dual degrees in Mathematical Methods in the Social Sciences and Economics.