Augie Busch was named the fourth head coach in the Houston Swimming program history on May 18, 2011. Bringing a distinguished career as an assistant to his first head coaching job, Busch has raised the standards of excellence associated with Cougar Swimming. In just two seasons, the program jumped from 4th place at Conference USA Championships to 2nd in 2013, tying the program's best ever finish. At the meet, the Cougars recorded personal best times in 90% of their swims while breaking seven school records, including 4 of 5 relays, and achieving 4 NCAA `B' time standards.
Equally impressive has been the efforts put forth in the classroom under Busch's tenure. In 2012-2013, UH swimmers and divers set an all-time program best in achieving a 3.42 team GPA. 19 athletes were named to the C-USA Commissioner's honor roll and 11 made Dean's List while senior Reka Kovacs and junior Marissa Blumenthal were each honored with C-USA Academic Medals.
"I'm so proud of these women. They have shown a commitment to excellence athletically and academically. Our program has reached a point where everyone is thinking alike in their devotion to maximizing their individual potential. We have worked very hard in taking small, steady steps toward improving our team culture and getting the women to see what `team' is all about. The future is very bright for these women and this program."
During his time at UA, he worked primarily with the backstroke and individual medley swimmers while also serving as the program's recruiting coordinator. On the pool deck, Busch earned a reputation for his sophisticated knowledge of swimmers' techniques. In his eight seasons at Arizona, Busch's training group produced three NCAA champions, 21 individual All-Americans and swimmers on 10 national champion relay teams.
While with the Wildcats, Busch was instrumental in the success of two Olympians in Albert Subirats of Venezuela and Jake Tapp of Canada. Subirats is one of the most decorated swimmers in UA history with six national titles and 20 All-America accolades. Busch served as an assistant coach for the Venezuelan Olympic team in 2008 as well as for the 2007 Pan American Games.
Busch went to Arizona after a two-year stint as assistant women's swimming coach at the University of Arkansas. In 2003, his final season in Fayetteville, Busch helped guide the Lady Razorbacks to school records in 15-of-18 events and a 31st-place finish at the NCAA Championships.
Prior to his tenure at Arkansas, Busch served as the head swimming coach at Salpointe Catholic High School in Tucson from 1999-2000. He began his coaching career in 1996 as an assistant coach for the Hillenbrand Aquatics club team, now known as Ford Aquatics. Busch was also a volunteer assistant with the UA program from 1998-2001, and he was head coach of a high-profile summer league program, Sabino Vista Hills, during those same years.
Busch began his collegiate studies at The Ohio State University, where he was a two-year letter winner on the men's volleyball team. In 1996, he returned to Tucson and completed his degree at Arizona.
A native of Tucson, Busch was an all-state swimmer and volleyball player at Salpointe Catholic, where he also played basketball. He earned a bachelor's degree in psychology from The University of Arizona in December 1998. He minored in Spanish, a language he speaks fluently.
Busch is the son of current USA Swimming National Team Director Frank Busch, who was a six-time NCAA Coach of the Year.
Hometown: Tucson, Ariz.
Alma Mater: Arizona, 1998; B.A. psychology
Athletic Experience: Ohio State University, volleyball (1994-96)
2003-2011 -- University of Arizona (assistant coach)
2001-2003 -- University of Arkansas (assistant coach)
1999-2000 -- Salpointe Catholic High School (head coach)
2007 Pan American Games -- Venezuelan coaching staff
2011 / Arizona -- Men (3rd); Women (4th) NCAA Champion: (M) Cory Chitwood, 200 back 2010 / Arizona -- Men (4th); Women (5th) NCAA Champion: (M) Cory Chitwood, 200 back 2009 / Arizona -- Men (6th); Women (3rd) NCAA Champions: (W) Justine Schluntz, 200 free relay, 400 medley relay; Ana Agy, 400 medley relay 2008 / Arizona -- Men (1st); Women (1st) NCAA Champions: (M) Albert Subirats, 100 fly, 400 free relay, 400 medley relay; (W) Hailey Degolia 200 medley relay, 400 medley relay; Ana Agy 400 medley relay; Leone Vorster 800 free relay 2007 / Arizona -- Men (3rd); Women (2nd) NCAA Champions: (M) Albert Subirats, 100 Fly, 100 Back; (W) Hailey Degolia, 200 medley relay 2006 / Arizona -- Men (2nd); Women (3rd) NCAA Champions: (M) Albert Subirats, 400 Free Relay; Nick Thoman, 400 Medley Relay 2005 / Arizona -- Men (3rd); Women (3rd) 2004 / Arizona -- Men (4th); Women (3rd) 2003 / Arkansas -- Women (31st)
"Augie is a man of pure passion. He has a zest for life, and his attitude contributes to an environment for success. His passion and drive for continual progress is his best motivational tool. As an athlete, I always wanted to position myself around Augie because to him everything and anything was (and is) possible."
Lacey Nymyer-John, 2008 NCAA Woman of the Year, 2008 U.S. Olympic Silver Medalist, University of Arizona
"If it were not for Augie's efforts and his ability to recognize "green" talent, I would have never received the opportunity to swim for such a prestigious program. I came to Arizona as an unrecognized, and a non-recruited athlete with minimal swimming accolades¬¬¬- and graduated from U of A as a Pac-10 and NCAA Champion. I can say with complete confidence that I would have not achieved the same level of success under any other coach."
Ana Agy, 13-time NCAA All-American, NCAA Champion, University of Arizona
"I had the great fortune of working with Augie, my son, for the last eight years and I can honestly say without him our program would not have accomplished what we did. His real strength is how well he relates to his athletes, which is more important now than ever. He is an honest coach and presents himself in a way that conveys what it takes to be successful. He has such passion and his athletes know he is willing to dedicate himself to achieve their goals. Augie understands head coaching from many different perspectives and has been exposed to the complexity of being an advocate outside of the pool -- developing the connections with your alumni and gaining support for your sport."
Frank Busch, USA Swimming National Team Director, Six-Time NCAA Coach of the Year