Mariusz Podkoscielny

Mariusz Podkoscielny

Player Profile

Last College:
Arizona

Position:
Head Coach

Mariusz Podkoscielny, Oregon State's women's swimming coach, is a nine-time All-American and two-time Olympian. With that type of experience, the 34-year-old brought with him a national and international reputation to the task of building OSU's program when he was hired in the summer of 1996.

Now, entering Podkoscielny’s seventh season at Oregon State, the results of the work are obvious. Last season may well have been the finest in OSU’s women’s swimming history; it was certainly the most outstanding since the sport joined the Pacific-10 and NCAA ranks in 1986-87. The Beavers matched their highest-ever finish in the Pac-10 Championships, placing seventh as they topped Pacific Northwest rivals Washington and Washington State.

OSU sent two swimmers to the NCAA Championships for the first time ever, and both earned All-America honors. That marked the first time the Beavers had a pair of All-Americans in the same season, and Oregon State’s tie for 31st place was the Beavers highest-ever finish at the national meet.

OSU had a winning dual meet record for the third straight season; the Beavers hadn’t had a winning record for five years prior to Podkoscielny taking the helm.

Those marks built on Podkoscielny's first five seasons, when the Beavers rewrote OSU’s top-10 lists in each event and set school records numerous times.

That's just the beginning of what Podkoscielny is out to accomplish at OSU.

“I think this is the time for OSU to finally get back to the NCAAs and start producing All-Americans regularly,” Podkoscielny said. “Once you do that, you’re going to start breaking into the top 20, the top 15, the top 10, and that’s the ultimate goal.”

Prior to arriving at Oregon State before the 1996-97 season, Podkoscielny was an assistant men's and women's coach at Arizona since 1993. He had also been a volunteer assistant for the Wildcats and an assistant with Hillenbrand Aquatics in Tucson, Ariz.

At Arizona, Podkoscielny coached nine All-Americans, including 1996 Olympian Melanie Valerio of the United States. Podkoscielny was on the coaching staff as the Wildcats recorded their highest national finishes ever - fourth for the men and fifth for the women. A native of Gdansk, Poland, and a graduate of Arizona, Podkoscielny was on the Wildcat swim team from 1988-92. As a swimmer at Arizona, Podkoscielny rates as one of the fastest distance swimmers ever. Earning All-America honors nine times, Podkoscielny held school records in the 200, 500 and 1,650 freestyles. He was Arizona's fourth NCAA champion, winning the 1,650 freestyle as a freshman; in each of his four years, he finished among the top three nationally in the 500 and 1,650 freestyles.

Podkoscielny was a member of the Polish National Team from 1980-92 and swam at the 1988 and 1992 Olympics. In the 1988 Olympics, he finished fifth in both the 400 and 1,500 freestyles, and he set the Olympic record in the preliminary round of the 400 freestyle.

Podkoscielny’s wife is Dagmara Podkoscielny. Among his interests are reading and 20th Century history.

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