Robin Glynn – General Assignment Reporter –
After 14 seasons as Southern’s Head Swimming and Diving Coach, Tim Quill is dedicated to his job, his athletes and has had great accomplishments.
“I didn’t think I would like coaching,” said Quill. “It has been fun and rewarding. I think there is a lot more rewarding aspects of coaching than I originally thought.”
Prior to coaching at Southern, Quill lead the Cheshire YMCA to third place at the YMCA National Championships; but for individuals, he coached three YMCA national champions and over 100 YMCA All-Americans.
After the head coaching position opened at Southern, Quill said it was as if he was destined to be at S.C.S.U.
“It was the right place at the right time,” said Quill.
Quill’s athletes say that he is one of the most dedicated people that they have met.
“He understands swimming at a deeper level than many other coaches and tries to pass on his views to his swimmers,” said Oscar Castillo, member of the men’s swimming and diving team. “Tim gives us 100 percent every day and expects no less from his swimmers.”
Quill’s athletes also say that he has changed the program at Southern and what the team does that makes them stand out from other teams.
“Tim has changed Southern swimming only for the better,” said Rhiannon Urciuoli, member of the women’s swimming and diving team. “He worked hard to get to where he is and his experience and expertise in the sport has brought many options to the Southern team. He comes in day in and day out ready to bring everything to the pool deck. His different methods of training are what separates us from our competitors.”
Under Quill’s leadership, the swimming and diving program has boasted impressive numbers, including 346 Northeast-10 Individual Champions, 104 NCAA All-Americans titles, 17 Northeast-10 Team Championships, 13 Northeast-10 Championship MVP’s, nine Northeast-10 Swimmers of the Year, eight NCAA Division II records set by SCSU student-athletes, seven Metropolitan Conference Championships and seven Northeast-10 Freshmen of the Year.
Urciuoli said the statistics speak for themselves to describe Quill and his leadership.
“He shows his talents through his athletes,” said Urciuolo. “These statistics only further prove Tim’s potential of being one of the greatest coaches in Southern Swimming history. He builds his athletes to be strong and to be able to reach their fullest potential, when in reality as a coach that’s all he wants is to see his athletes succeed.”
Quill has also helped guide former athlete Ben Michaelson to qualify for the U.S. Olympics Trials. According to the Athletic Department, Michaelson was the first Southern swimmer to qualify for the U.S. Olympic trials and once ranked among the top 100-meter butterfly performers in the world. Michaelson won two gold medals for the U.S. at the 2003 Pan American Games.
“To have an athlete qualify for the Olympic trials,” said Quill, “and to stand on that deck with some of the most legendary coaches that the sport has ever seen; to be part of that I think that is every coaches dream.”
Quill’s athletes are impressed with what he has accomplished.
“I believe he has achieved incredible features as a swimming coach,” said Castillo about Quill’s accomplishments at Southern. “I believe it says a lot about him. I mean, there are hundreds, perhaps thousands of coaches that are trying to make their swimmers qualify for Olympic trials but the reality is that achieving that level is extremely difficult in this competitive sport.”
Looking back on his career at Southern, Quill would say his greatest accomplishment would be the ability to overcome adversity and to never take the job for granted. You never know what type of program you have each year, he said.
“I like my job, I like Southern Connecticut,” said Quill. “I think they have been very good to me over the years and we have great athletic administration that does everything in their power to provide you the resources necessary to be one of the best programs.”