ECA Coach Spotlight - Randy Jarman

Randy Jarman has joined East Carolina Aquatics as head site coach for Carteret County and regional director for Carteret and Onslow counties in 2019-20.

Jarman has more than 20 years coaching experience at the collegiate, club and high school level, including a combined 15 years at the Division 1 level at Radford University, East Carolina University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He coached at Shelby High School and, in addition to ECA, has club coaching experience with the Douglas County Stingrays in Georgia and the North Carolina Aquatic Club in Chapel Hill.

In addition to coaching with ECA, Jarman works at Arthritis and Rehab Medicine in Morehead City. Jarman graduated from East Carolina University, earning a bachelor’s degree in psychology in 1997 and a master’s degree in sociology in 2000.

We recently caught up with Coach Randy, who answered the questions below: 

Goals this year for team. To continue and promote the development of young people seeking personal excellence. It sounds cliché but it’s true. Kids are great! They remind you of all the earlier stages in life you rushed through…to trip them up and slow them down long enough to think is fun.

Thoughts on returning to ECA I was a part of ECA when it was still GSC (Greenville Swim Club). I grew up racing kids on this team and then in college I trained with the senior group to stay in shape. My nickname was Randaddy (short for Granddaddy) because I was old…25 years old (haha). These are part of my roots and I’m glad to be a part of it again.

How long have you been coaching? How did you get into coaching? The profession has kind of pursued me. After flunking out of NC State my freshman year I returned home to Kinston to find a “coachless“ team. I accepted the position at age 19 and fell in love with the profession. At age 25, I was accepted into ECU with a goal of finishing my degree. Shortly after that Coach Kobe asked me to help out with the college team. At that point I was convinced I wanted to coach seriously.

Greatest reward from coaching? As a young kid, I almost died because of asthma. My pediatrician told my mother to get me involved in swimming. As a coach now I am always offering advice, demanding excellence, and reminding the kids to only practice good habits. Unless you are a complete hypocrite, at some point in time you have to heed your own words. I would say my greatest rewards are that swimming saved my life and continues teaching me life.

Who is your coaching role model? A former pastor was the first person that came to my mind. He had a profound effect on my life. He always listened to me and gave me a perspective that was very different from my small world view. Other than that, I have tremendous respect for many coaches but I guess Coach K from Duke is a pretty good role model to follow.

I have been blessed with many friends…true friends I know I can count on. We spend a lot of time riding bikes, boating and helping one another with yard work and such. This is my favorite place that I have ever lived. I just love being outside and playing! My adulthood is not completely different from my childhood and that makes me a very lucky person.

What is your day job? I have felt a pull for the past 7 years to understand more about addiction and how to help serve others in recovery. That has been a real eye opener in many regards. It has taught me that we ALL have addictions (some are more socially acceptable than others) and we all need to have someone actively listen to us without waiting to speak or answer. Addiction and recovery can be very nasty, it can be depressing, and it is an everyday struggle for the addict. But most importantly, it makes me want to start at the beginning of the spectrum and teach kids to set positive goals before getting sidetracked with unhealthy addiction. As Fredrick Douglass said, “It’s easier to build strong children than it is to fix broken adults.”

I am a Christ follower first and foremost! I have seen the full realm of human characteristics and evil is everywhere. I realize that in the right circumstances and conditions I can exhibit the ugliest of these characteristics, so my reliance on Christ is critical. To those who read this and are not Christians I would like to make a distinction about a misconception. Christians aren’t perfect…they are just forgiven!