Matt Hood enters his first year as part of the Chowan athletic department as the Head Swimming Coach. The 2016-17 season will be the first in program history for the women's swim team.
The search for Chowan's first women's swimming coach concluded with the hiring of Matt Hood, who is eager to make a historic mark in Murfreesboro. "I am very excited to be joining Chowan University as the women's swimming coach. It is a wonderful opportunity to be able to build a new program and to bring the Hawks' tradition of athletic success to the pool. Stepping onto campus I really felt like Chowan is where God called me to be; teaching young women the skills for success not only in the pool, but skills that will carry into the classroom, workplace and life after college," stated Hood.
Vice President/Director of Athletics, Ozzie McFarland noted, "As I researched coaches to start a swimming program, I quickly settled on the name Matt Hood. I was told by career coaches that Matt is the person that they would choose to start a program. His work ethic, faith and loyalty are beyond reproach and will be the perfect fit for our department and our school. Matt and his wife, Allie, will be outstanding representatives of our university and our community."
With the addition of women's swimming, Chowan's athletic department supports 17 athletic teams with seven men's programs and ten women's programs as well as a co-ed cheerleading team.
Hood will spend the next sixteen months recruiting for Chowan and implementing the Hawks' first recruiting class.
Hood has spent the last four years with Lehigh Valley Aquatics in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. After serving as an assistant coaching for a USA Club team, Hood was promoted to head coach and grew the team from a low of 44 swimmers to over 70 in less than one year. Under Hood's direction, the club team had multiple high school PIAA State qualifiers in both AA and AAA divisions and has seen all of the team's high school seniors advance to swim at the college level.
Hood managed a group of over 70 swimmers ages 6-18 during his time with Lehigh Valley Aquatics. He created their competition schedule, led them through individually planned practices and also managed the team's financial records in conjunction with the Lehigh Valley Aquatics board.
Hood competed as a student-athlete at Asbury University in Wilmore, Kentucky. During his time at Asbury, Hood won the NAIA National Championship in the 200 freestyle and finished runner-up in the 500 freestyle. He held school records in all freestyle events while serving as team captain. He gained coaching experience through practicums with Highbridge Aquatics and the Kettering City swim team. Hood also served as head coach of the Cardinal Hill swim team.
He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Sport Management from Asbury in 2011. Hood resides in Murfreesboro with his wife, Allie.