Director of Competitive Aquatics
Coach Rogers has a long history of success with athletes of all abilities. As an age group coach, he has guided swimmers to hundreds of NAG Top 16 swims and over a dozen NAG National Championships & Records. His swimmers have earned numerous New York, Louisiana and Florida H.S. State championships as well as both NCSA and USA Swimming Junior National Championships; including a Junior National champion in every stroke. His age group swimmers have finaled at USA Swimming Nationals, made National & Olympic teams both here and abroad and have gone on to hold NCAA, US Open and American records and an Olympic Gold medalist.
In his time as a Master’s coach, he led his swimmers to hundreds of USMS National Top Ten rankings, countless USMS All Americans and National & World championship gold medal performances. Rich has run successful Swim Schools throughout the Bay helping countless number of area children how to swim.
He began his coaching career under his coach and mentor, Charlie Schlegel, in Plainview, N.Y. That experience ignited a passion for the profession that lives within him to this day. Under Coach Schegel's guidance, Rich learned what it took to forge a winning team. Coach Schegel is one high school swimming's most successful coaches; with the second best winning percentage in high school history. Rich still uses many of the methodologies and mindsets he learned during those years today.
Rich left New York and moved to Tampa Bay in 1988 and began a long coaching career in the area. He was the founder and head coach of Tampa Bay Aquatics (TBAY). Under his guidance, TBAY was a perennial Top Ten team at Junior Nationals and had individual and relays qualified for USA Nationals year in and out. In 2006, after nearly twenty years in coaching in the area, he guided TBAY to the 18 & Under USA Swimming National Champions.
After that success, Rich decided to leave the Tampa Bay area to go to post-Katrina New Orleans in 2007. His goal was to bring his skill set to NOLA and do his part to help rebuild through swimming. While in NOLA, Rogers helped to return the local club team, Nu Wave, to healthy numbers and guided it to a competitive resurgence. He worked with his Board of Directors to institute new initiatives, such as outreach programs, learn to swim programs, camps and more to reach their goals. Under his guidance, Nu Wave developed club and high school state champions and record holders and also fielded squads for NCSA & USA Swimming Juniors.
Rich also helped implement successful training strategies as a member of the University of New Orleans coaching staff during his time in NOLA. He guided the staff in adopting the Super Sport System (3S) seasonal design methodology. It worked. In just three short years for the ladies and two with the men, the young team re-wrote the record books. UNO also had four of their foreign swimmers go home and combine to win nine (9) National Championships in their native countries.
Rogers returned home to Florida in 2010. He became the Program Director for Clearwater Aquatic Team (CAT). He joined with Hall of Fame Coach Randy Reese. During his time at CAT, the program’s offerings and participation numbers grew to new levels. The team’s performance in the pool also reached new heights. That combination of growth and performance helped CAT gain it’s first ever Gold Medal status from USA Swimming, along with many other in and out of the water accomplishments.
After leaving CAT in 2013, Rogers join the Amateur Athletic Union. Rich was appointed as the Director of Club Development by the AAU Swimming Executive Committee. His, and the AAU’s shared goal, is to extend the reach of the sport and provide more people with the opportunity to gain from it’s benefits.
In 2014, Rogers created a model AAU club called, Trident Swimming. The goal was to give others interested in expanding the sport some real world examples of how to start a swim club. Trident Swimming was used as a model for other individuals and helped spawn new competitive opportunities for swimmers across the country.
In September of 2016, Coach Rogers was brought on as the Director of Competitive Aquatics at the Brandon Sports and Aquatic Center in Brandon, Florida. Among is duties is being the Head Coach of Blue Wave Swimming. In this capacity, Rogers is utilizing his vast experience building successful swim clubs to bring Blue Wave back to national prominence.
One of the ways Coach Rogers is accomplishing that goal is by adding new facilities here at BSAC. Since his arrival, BSAC has added functional fitness areas and equipment, added a new ten (10) lane short course pool and have upgraded our long course facility. Additionally, we have some other seasonal facilities across the greater Tampa Bay area. In just a few short years, the record book has almost been completly rewritten. Blue Wave has seen it's enrollment more than triple and has enjoyed success at every level, with local, state and USA Swimming National Age Group individual and relay Top Ten 10 and first place finishes.
Rich is happy to be a the helm of Blue Wave. He is certain we will find new and innovative ways to both grow the program and improve the experience for the swimmers and their families. Coach Rogers truly believes in the organization’s mission of Impacting Lives Daily. He hopes to continue to contribute all he can to make his swimmers and their families the best they can be.