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Aug. 6, 2013

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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va.–Virginia swimming and diving head coach Augie Busch announced Tuesday (Aug. 6) that Cory Chitwood, Sam Busch and Clif Robbins have been named assistant coaches.

Chitwood joins the Cavaliers from LSU, where he was an assistant coach for the 2012-13 season and worked primarily with the Tiger mid-distance and specialty-stroke swimmers. The 2012 graduate of Arizona won three consecutive NCAA Championships in the 200 backstroke and was a 14-time All-American as well as a four-year conference all-academic team member. On the international stage, Chitwood was a member of the U.S. National team and finished 10th in the 200-meter backstroke with a time of 2:00.03 in the semifinals at the 2012 Olympic Trials.

Before LSU, Chitwood served as the Northern Kentucky Clippers club team’s head assistant coach, specializing with the elite 11-12 and 13-14 year old age groups after he completed his collegiate career.

“Cory is a natural-born leader in every sense of the word,” Augie Busch said. “I do not hesitate when I say he is the most special student-athlete I have ever coached. In his time at Arizona, he set a daily standard for effort and attitude and was elected captain as a sophomore, something that had never happened in the history of the program.

“At LSU, he made an enormous impact in a very short period of time because his passion, charisma and enthusiasm are felt instantaneously by everyone with whom he comes in contact. It will not be long before his presence is strongly felt here at Virginia and I can’t wait to coach with him.”

Sam Busch comes to Charlottesville to join his brother after serving two seasons as an assistant coach at Auburn. He helped lead the Tiger men to two top-ten NCAA finishes, including a sixth-place mark in 2012. Sam Busch worked primarily with the backstroke and freestyle groups and guided Kyle Owens to 2012 SEC Championships in the 100 and 200 backstroke. Sam Busch served as the initial scout for the Tiger recruiting program and helped coach the 2013 national champion men’s 200 free relay.

A 2008 graduate of Arizona, Sam Busch mentored Marcelo Chierighini to the 2012 London Olympics where he competed for the Brazilian 4x100m freestyle and 4x100m medley relays. Before Auburn, Sam Busch served as a volunteer assistant for two seasons each at West Virginia (2009-11) and Arizona (2007-09). While in Tucson, Ariz., he assisted five seasons at Tucson Ford Aquatics, the 2010 National Club Champions. Busch also served three years as head coach of the women’s program at Salpointe Catholic High School in Tucson.

“Having the chance to coach together is something Sam and I have always talked and dreamed about,” Augie Busch said.” The fact that the opportunity is here almost seems surreal. We will feed off of each other’s energy on the pool deck. I know I will always get a tireless work ethic and positive attitude from him. He is an incredible asset with regards to recruiting and his ability to teach and motivate will come through immediately. He will make a huge impact in so many ways on our program.”

Robbins was an assistant coach under Augie Busch at Houston for the 2012-13 season after serving as a volunteer assistant in 2011-12. Robbins helped guide the Cougars to a program-best second-place finish in Conference USA in 2013. The Cougars recorded personal-best times in 90 percent of their swims and broke seven school records in 2013 while achieving a program-best 3.42 team GPA.

A 2007 graduate of Texas, Robbins was a four-year letter winner for the Longhorns. Robbins competed at the US National Championships three times while at Texas and helped the Longhorns to four consecutive Big 12 Championships. Prior to UH, served as both the head swim coach and aquatics program director at the River Oaks Country Club in Houston.

“Clif volunteered for me during my first year in Houston and it did not take long before I knew I wanted to coach with him,” Augie Busch said. “He has a great feel for teaching and relating to young people. He cares so much for the people with whom he works and that comes through very quickly. Clif is a huge reason why were able to have so much success in my second year at UH. We have a great relationship and I cannot wait to watch his bright future continue to unfold here at UVa.”

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