LAS CRUCES, NM – The Aggies have officially found their man. Head Coach Rick Pratt announced Thursday that the well-accomplished Zachary Hawley will be taking over as NM State’s head diving coach.
The 16-year coaching veteran makes his way to Las Cruces after spending the past nine seasons as the Head Diving Coach and Assistant Coach at George Mason where he was a three-time Atlantic-10 Diving Coach of the Year. At George Mason, he also played a part in developing four conference champions and an NCAA qualifier.
“We are extremely excited to welcome Coach Zachary Hawley as our new Diving Coach,” Head Coach Rick Pratt said. “We were looking for a coach with the knowledge and experience to help take our diving program to the next level, and we found a great one in coach Hawley. His process for developing divers is remarkable and he has the experience to lead our diving squad and compete at the highest level.”
With George Mason, Hawley also coached three A-10 Diver of the Year award recipients and has led 13 individuals to Division I NCAA Zone Qualifiers, including five DI NCAA Zone Springboard Finalists and four DI NCAA Zone Platform Finalists.
Hawley made quite a name for himself while in Fairfax, Virginia, as he also was the owner and CEO of the Mason Dive Academy which provides a dive program for athletes of all ages and skill levels. Coach Hawley made it his mission to build and develop strong, successful and confident young individuals in the sport of diving with the ultimate goal of getting these values to carry over to other facets of life.
Prior to his tenure at George Mason, Hawley spent two years with South Dakota State University as a graduate assistant where he played a vital role in SDSU’s transition into a Division I program.
While at South Dakota State, his athletes broke all the program’s diving records and Hawley helped guide the Jackrabbits to their first NCAA Zone Qualifiers in school history.
From 2010-2012, Hawley traveled across the nation during the summer to spend time with some of the top coaches in the nation. These included trips spending time working at several collegiate camps including camps at The University of Texas at Austin, The University of Indiana and The University of Missouri.
He also performed in High Dive shows, where his responsibilities included lighting himself on fire and diving from 70 feet into 10 feet of water.
“I am very excited for the opportunity to join coach Pratt and the rest of the athletic department at NM State,” Hawley explained. “Coach Pratt has an excellent reputation for being supportive of swimming and diving and working together as a cohesive unit. I greatly enjoyed my conversations with the administration, academic services, and athletic training.
“It feels like the athletic department is very welcoming and is looking out for the needs of their athletes. There is a fantastic support system in place to help them reach their goals not just athletically, but to help them succeed in their academic endeavors.”
For complete coverage of NM State swimming and diving, visit NMStateSports.com – the official home of Aggie athletics – and follow the Aggies on Facebook (NM State Swimming & Diving), Twitter (@NMStateSwimDive) and Instagram (@NMStateSwimDive)