To the other teams in the Atlantic Coast Conference, hearing about the success of Florida State University divers might sound like a broken record, but to diving coach Patrick Jeffrey it is music to his ears. His divers continued their dominance in the ACC in 2003-04 and show no signs of slowing down
Since Jeffrey's arrival in 1999, Seminole divers have captured 15 of the 20 championships on the board. Within that stretch, six different Seminoles have claimed league titles with nine divers named All-ACC. Florida State claimed its fourth-straight women's Diver of the Meet Award at last year's league championships as Tiffany Manning won both boards.
With as much as a stranglehold as Florida State divers have had over the last five, the accomplishments of the women's team at last year's conference meet might have even exceeded Jeffrey's expectations. The Seminoles captured the top five spots on the one-meter board then took first through third during the threemeter competition.
Over the last three seasons, that success has carried over to the national level where the Tribe is starting to make its mark. Jeffrey's divers produced their fifth All-America award as Manning captured fifth-place honors on the platform--the highest finish by a Seminole at the national meet since 2001. Manning third All-America award makes her just the third Seminole to earn the honor in three different seasons.
During the previous year, Louis Gagnet captured the men's first All- America honor since 1999 and the first by a diver since Paul Spray during the 1992 season.
Four out of the five years that Jeffrey has been with Florida State it has claimed at least one conference title on the men's side. Brent Burkman collected the men's first diving title since 1992 when he won the one-meter event. The following year Josh Edelman swept both events and for the past two years Gagnet was crowned champion on the one and three-meter boards. Florida State's fourstraight championships on the one-meter and three more in the three-meter haven't been equaled in nearly 20 years.
During Jeffrey's second year the women's program started controlling the league when Chelsie Lerew won her first of five titles. She added All-America honors to her resume in 2002 on the one-meter board. In 2002, current senior Courtney McClow got into the act when she won the one-meter event. The past three seasons, Florida State has had the top three divers on the three-meter board and top three of four in the one-meter event.
The summer of 2003 saw a pair of Seminoles have some success at the Speedo National Diving Championships in Indianapolis, Ind. Manning had the highest showing with a 12th-place finish on the ten-meter platform to go along with a 13th-showing in the onemeter event. McClow finished 18th on the one-meter. Manning qualified for this year's US Olympic Trials, but did not compete due to an injury.
Jeffrey's wealth of diving knowledge is a direct result of his own career. During his time at Ohio State, he captured five national championships in various events. At the 1988 NCAA Championships he became the only diver in NCAA history to win three events in the same year as he captured titles on the one-meter, three-meter and ten-meter platform events. That season he was named the NCAA Diver of the Year.
On the international scene, Jeffrey was a finalist on the ten-meter platform at the 1988 Seoul Olympics and the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta. He is a three-time U.S. National Diving Champion in the ten-meter competition, while holding a pair of titles in the three-meter event. In addition, he won bronze medals at the 1991 and 1995 Pan-Am games. He also competed as a member of the US's 1989 and 1995 World Cup teams as well as at the 1993 Goodwill Games.
Jeffrey's coaching experience is just as extensive as his diving career. On a world stage he has coached the 2000 US Olympic team along with the 1997 and 1999 Senior World Cup squads. Most recently he mentored the 2001 US World Championships team in Fukioka, Japan. He has served as the Senior National team coach from 1997-2000 with a one year stint (1998) with the Junior ational Team. Under Jeffrey's tutelage, divers have won four US Senior National titles, three Junior National championships, and a pair of third place finishes for the Senior Men's team.
The 39-year-old Jeffrey graduate from Ohio State in 1988 with a degree in journalism and advertising.
JEFFERY'S COACHING RESUME: 2001: US World Championship Team 2000: US Olympic Team 1999-present: Diving Coach, Florida State 1998: Junior National Team 1997: US World Cup Team 1996-present: Senior National Team 1996-99: Diving Coach, Florida Atlantic