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FSU dismisses swimming coach Harper

April 6, 2013
Neil Harper (photo :

Neil Harper (photo :

Florida State has dismissed longtime swimming and diving head coach Neil Harper, a university administrator confirmed to the Democrat late Friday afternoon.

Harper, a 1990 graduate of LSU, recently completed his 14th season leading the program. His men’s team finished 23rd at the recent NCAA Championships while the women finished 32nd.

Both teams finished fourth at the 2013 ACC Championships as well.

Harper was a three-time ACC Coach of the Year (2004, 2006 and 2007), and coming into this season he had 89 ACC champions, 61 All-Americans and one national champion under his tutelage.

n the last six years the FSU men finished 21st, 20th, 19th, 23rd, 16th and 23rd at the NCAA meet. They haven’t scored more than 61 points at nationals during that span. The national champion typically scores in the high 400s at the NCAA meet.

The FSU women have enjoyed even less success, with the team scoring just twice at the national meet since 2008. The women finished with 15 points last season and 12 this season, placing 30th and 32nd, in the nation respectively.

Harper is just the second FSU head coach to be let go in the last five years. Volleyball coach Todd Kress was fired in 2008 and replaced by Chris Poole.

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