June 21, 2011
ATLANTA – Head Coach Courtney Shealy Hart has announced the addition of Robert Pinter to the Georgia Tech swimming and diving staff on Tuesday. Pinter comes to Georgia Tech from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
“We are excited to bring someone who has as much experience and knowledge of the swimming world as Robert does,” said Shealy Hart. “Robert’s resume and background is impressive and will help with both domestic and international recruiting.”
Pinter, a former letterwinner for Wisconsin from 1990-93 and a Romanian Olympian who competed at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, will bring years of experience to an already veteran Yellow Jacket staff in his new role as the distance swim coach.
“I am humbled and excited to work for a coach like Courtney,” said Pinter. “Georgia Tech has a great staff and I am excited to start coaching there. The school has tremendous resources and I hope that I will be a good asset to the program and look forward to working with the team this year.”
Pinter started his coaching career in 1999 as the head coach of the Oregon Community Swim Club in Oregon, Wisc. In 2002 he moved on to be the Co-Head Senior Coach of the Badger Aquatics Club in Madison until he moved on to his first collegiate coaching position at the University of Iowa in September 2004 where he remained until 2008.
While at Iowa, Pinter assisted in coaching two NCAA qualifiers and 10 provisional qualifiers while helping the Hawkeyes to a top-25 finish, six new school records and a women’s recruiting class that was named the best freshman class in school history.
In 2008, Pinter returned “home” as an assistant coach at the University of Wisconsin where he has excelled over the past three seasons. In his first year with the program (2008-09), Pinter helped coach the Badgers to 11 NCAA qualifiers, 16 school records, five Big Ten titles and 21 Olympic Trial qualifiers. The next season saw four more school records go down, five more Big Ten titles, nine NCAA qualifiers and two individuals make the 2009 USA Swimming National team.
Last season, the Badgers saw the most success since Pinter returned to his alma mater as the women finished in 11th place and the men in 24th at the NCAA Championships. The season culminated with the success of Maggie Meyer’s 200-Backstroke National title, eight other swimmers who achieved All-American status, one Big Ten record and 10 more school records en route to six Big Ten titles.
Pinter started his own personal swimming career off at an early age and in 1986 realized that his dream of garnering an education and athletic career at the same time would not work out in his native country of Romania. At that time, all young men of age were drafted into the army for a 15-month stint and Pinter found himself to be a swimmer for Romania’s notorious Army Club, Steaua Bucuresti, serving his 15 months.
In 1988, he defected to Hungary where he found temporary shelter. Using the advice of a relative in Wisconsin, Pinter applied to UW where he was accepted in 1990 on a full athletic scholarship. While at UW, Pinter accumulated many accolades, including multiple All-American honors, election as team captain, multiple school records (one of which lasted 17 years, only broken in 2009 under his personal tutelage), and Big Ten runner-up standing in several events. He was also able to compete for Romania in the 1992 Olympics, where he was a finalist in the 200 butterfly and ended the year with a ranking of seventh in the world, in that event.