John Christie
John Christie

Head Swimming Coach

UIC Swimming Coach John Christie has a simple plan for his team. Train hard, compete against the best swimming programs you can find during the season and have the best meet of your career at the MCC Championship.

That plan held true in 1999 as, despite lackluster dual meet records for his squads, the Flames claimed four conference titles at the MCC Championships: Erin Garrett (100 and 200-yard butterfly), Ryan Nelson (1-meter diving) and Andrea Bove (3-meter diving).

Christie had similar success two seasons ago as the 1998 MCC Championships included conference titles in five events; Erin Garrett (100 and 200 fly), Rebecca Miller/Hodgdon (100 free), Dan Bucko (50 free), and Ryan Nelson (1-meter diving).

UIC hired Christie just before the start of the 1996-97 season with the goal of building a top-quality Division I program. With little time to prepare and no time to recruit he led the Flames to a very successful inaugural season, including a men's squad that finished 10-5.

He has also been a constant recruiting force, bringing top-flight talent from all over the world to UIC. The 1998-99 squad included 22 newcomers from 4 states, and three countries. Those swimmers are now the core of a young Flames squad that will fill the holes left by MCC Champions Ryan Nelson and Erin Garrett.

A 1981 graduate of State University College at Brockport in Brockport, N.Y., Christie has an extensive coaching background dating back to 1980.

Christie is no stranger to collegiate swimming. He has previously served as the assistant swimming coach at both the University of Kansas (1985-88) and the College of William and Mary (1988-89). Christie was also the head swimming and water polo coach at California State University at San Bernardino from 1989-92 before the school dropped the swimming program. While coaching at the collegiate level, Christie coached swimmers for the U.S. Open, the Olympic trials and the NCAA Championships. Three of his swimmers at CSUSB were NCAA National Championship qualifiers.

Throughout his coaching career, Christie has been associated with some of the finest coaches in the country, including 1988 U.S. Olympic coaches Richard Quick and Skip Kinney. Christie was a coach and head camp counselor at the Stanford University Swim Camp conducted by Quick and Kinney in 1989.

Christie is a member of the National College Swimming Coaches Association, United States Swimming and the United States Swimming Sport Psychology Committee.