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Men’s Swimming: Welsh leads team in quest for Big East title

Andrew Owens | Thursday, January 14, 2010

Twenty-five seasons into his role as head coach of the Irish, Tim Welsh is looking to continue the consistent success that has led Notre Dame to Big East championships in four of the last five seasons.

Notre Dame currently holds a 4-2 record on the season after a narrow defeat against Northwestern on Jan. 9.  Welsh has led the to several strong performances, including a fourth-place finish at the competitive Ohio State Invitational in December at the end of the fall season

“I think that the experience of the weekend helped us take a major step towards being ready for what we have [in the spring],” Welsh said following the meet.

Welsh said the quick competition was a good measuring stick for his squad.
“The Big Ten always provides really great competition, it was clearly the fastest we’ve seen all season,” he said.

The Irish also pulled out a big conference win in the fall over perennial power Pittsburgh, getting  a 179-121 victory in November.

Notre Dame will try to shake off the loss to Northwestern this weekend when they face Michigan State at Rolfs Aquatic Center. After facing the Spartans the team will prepare for the approaching Big East Championships next month in Pittsburgh.

Welsh’s experience and expertise in this sport will be a key advantage for the Irish as they look to secure their sixth Big East title in six seasons. For Welsh, the road to success here at Notre Dame has been a long one.

In Welsh’s 24 seasons, the Irish posted a 287-154 record. The consistent powerhouse has finished in the top four of the Big East in each of the last 11 seasons.

Before coaching at Notre Dame, Welsh spent eight seasons as head coach of the Johns Hopkins men’s and women’s teams. During those eight seasons he led the team to two Division II National Championships and eight conference championships.

Welsh began as the coach of the men’s and women’s teams before they split into two separate programs. The men’s team began in the Midwestern Collegiate Conference before switching to the Big East. While in the MCC, the Irish won 15 conference championships under Welsh.

For Welsh, another conference title would be an addition to a long list of accomplishments in his illustrious career.