Monte Nitzkowski

/Monte Nitzkowski

About Monte Nitzkowski

(1929-2016) Born in Pasadena, California, Monte learned to swim at age three at the Pasadena YWCA and Brook-side Park pools. His first swimming competition was at age five with the Pasadena Athletic Club. He graduated from Huntington Beach Union High School in 1947, then attended Fullerton Junior College where he was first introduced to Water Polo by Hall of Fame Coach, James R. Smith. Monte competed in both Water Polo and Swimming at Fullerton then matriculated to UCLA where, under the coaching of Brud Cleveland, received All Coast honors in Water Polo and captained the swim team. While at UCLA, Monte set the Pacific Coast Conference record in the 200-yard butterfly. Upon 1951 graduation with a BA Degree, he entered the United States Navy and was eventually stationed at the United States Naval Academy where, under the coaching of John Higgens, made the 1952 United States Olympic Swimming Team, placing ninth in the 200 meter butterfly at Helsinki. After the service, Monte entered graduate studies at California State University, Long Beach where he received his Masters Degree and Teaching Credential in 1955. He began his teaching and coaching career at Long Beach City College in the Fall of 1955 and retired from Long Beach City College in 1989. Monte taught in both the History and Physical Education Departments. His teams won numerous Regional and State Water Polo and Swimming Championships. Monte began coaching Water Polo internationally with the Pan American Games in 1967 and retired following the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles. He served as Assistant Pan American Coach in 1967 (Gold Medal) and 1975(Silver Medal), and as Head Pan American Coach in 1979 (Gold Medal) and 1983 (Gold Medal). Monte was the Assistant United States Olympic Water Polo coach in Mexico City (5th place) and Head Olympic Coach for the 1972 Munich Olympics (Bronze Medal), the 1980 Moscow Olympics (boycott) and the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics (Silver Medal). The 1980 Olympic Water Polo Team was one of the finest teams ever to represent the United States and was considered a strong contender for the Gold Medal. During his career, exclusive of the boycott, every Olympic Team which Monte head-coached won an Olympic Medal. He was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in Ft. Lauderdale,Florida in 1991. Monte was a chair of the World Water Polo Coaches Association which was formed in Jerusalem in 1995 to give National and Olympic Water Polo coaches a voice in the formulation of rules and marketing of the sport.
Load More Posts