Competitive swimmers know a boatload of techniques to keep their race-times down, and they apply many of these before they even hit the water.  A clean, high-velocity entry into the pool off the block is one important aspect.  On the initial dive, swimmers attempt to propel themselves the optimal distance through the air before breaking the surface of the water and starting their strokes: the smaller the splash, the less the resistance, which can shave precious time off the race.    

When a former Crusader Swimming Champion and coach such as Mike Murphy comes home, however, there is a much bigger splash. 

Brother Rice High School Director of Athletics Jim Prunty recently announced that 1989 graduate and former Brother Rice Crusader Swimming Champion and coach Mike Murphy has returned to “The Swamp” at 99th and Pulaski as Head Swimming Coach. Murphy replaces Coach Tony Cichowicz, who helmed the program the past seven years.  

Murphy brings with him a flood of experience as an athlete and a coach.  A member of the Brother Rice 1986, 1987, and 1988 Sectional Championship teams, he was Freshman/Sophomore Catholic League Champion in the 100 yd. Breaststroke in 1987, state qualifier in 1988, and team captain in 1989.  Murphy also played on the 1988 and 1989 Brother Rice State Champion Water Polo teams under Rice’s legendary coach, Jim “Moose” Muclrone.  

In the 1990s, Murphy started coaching swimming at both the high school and club levels, training and mentoring numerous state and CentralZone qualifiers and finalists, including two ISI State Champions. He earned ISI Sectional Coach of the Year as his Crusader team captured the 1995 Chicago Catholic League Team Championship as part of a three-year run of Sectional Championships between 1994 and 1996.


“The goal is to bring the Brother Rice Swimming and Diving program back to being one of the premier programs in the IHSA,” Coach Murphy stated.

Welcome home, Coach! 

For more information about the Crusader Swim Team, please contact Coach Mike Murphy at