Kellogg’s Eagles are setting marks

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Will Cheney

The Georgia Southern University swimming and diving head coach Nate Kellogg is entering his 10th year with the program during which he has rewritten the record books.

Since Kellogg was hired as the interim head coach in the fall of 2004, GSU has broken 54 records under his tutelage. And the team did not waste any time getting started when Kellogg took the helm, breaking seven records between 2004 and 2006.

“There was no focus to break records at all that year. I was just hanging on for dear life at that point,” Kellogg said in a news release. “Some of the women on that team were very, very talented. They kind of adapted to me and ran with it.”

The year 2007 was a big leap forward for the GSU swimming and diving program. That year Kellogg bolstered his team with a recruiting class that included Caroline Bevillard, Ali Campbell, Lindsey Goodman and Kristen Haudenchild. That same year brought a conference change, with GSU moving from the North East Conference to the Coastal Collegiate Swimming Association.

“The 2007 class consisted of six swimmers of which four broke records. That was a really good class,” Kellogg said in a news release. “They brought a different standard of competitiveness to the program, and I think we also really understood that it was a much faster and deeper conference than what we had been in.”

Between 2007 and 2011, Kellogg’s squad set 19 individual records and 10 relay records, six of which are still on the board at the RAC. GSU also went on to set at least nine school-best records in each of the past two seasons.

In his nine-year tenure at GSU, Kellogg has unearthed other keys to success beyond a decorated recruiting class: creating a team dynamic and patience.

“We feel like putting them in more of a team dynamic really helps. Breaking the record is just kind of the result of focusing on the team, racing for the team and competing for the team,” Kellogg said in a news release. “We’re patient in their development but demanding in their work ethic. We don’t expect people to come in their freshman year and completely set every single record.”