Chris Bergère became the third diving coach in Michigan history on April 25, 2002, when he took the reins from the legendary Dick Kimball, who had guided the program for the previous 43 years. Bergère brought with him a wealth of success at both the collegiate and national levels, having trained world-class divers at every level of his coaching career.
Among Bergère's credits are Jason Coben, Michigan's first NCAA platform champion (2003) and the Big Ten Diver of the 2004 conference championship meet. Since joining the Wolverines, Bergère has helped Michigan to seven top-10 national finishes. The Wolverines have also won three Big Ten Championships in his tenure.
Bergère led the United States diving team at the 2009 World University Games in Belgrade, Serbia this past summer, marking the second time he has coached the national team at this level.
Bergère joined the Michigan coaching staff following nearly two decades as the head men's and women's diving coach at his alma mater, LaSalle University. Bergère was asked to lead the Explorers immediately following his graduation in 1986.
During his 17 years with the Explorers, Bergère also ran the successful L'Air Bergère Diving Club in Philadelphia, Pa. Among the divers under his guidance were three former Michigan letterwinners: Brett Wilmot (1996-99), Coben (2000-04) and Tealin Kelemen (2000-04). Wilmot became one of the most recent divers under Bergère to achieve national success, finishing ninth at the 2000 Olympic Trials.
Bergère was recognized with national and conference coaching accolades in his 17 year-tenure with LaSalle. With consecutive Verizon Diving Coach of the Year awards from 1999 to 2002, Bergère was the only coach to be honored in the four-year history of the Atlantic 10 Conference.
Before LaSalle joined the Atlantic 10, Bergère earned Outstanding Diving Coach honors in 1994 and '95 as a member of the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference. Prior to the existence of the ECAC, LaSalle competed in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, where Bergere was named the league's Outstanding Diving Coach in 1987 and '90.
In 2000 he was selected to coach the U.S. Junior Olympic Diving Team at the Junior Olympic Winter National Championships in Long Island, N.Y. The team won the gold medal and earned a trip to the International Diving Championships in Waldkraiburg, Germany, where Bergère led the Junior National team to its first title in its 14 trips to the international meet.
For his accomplishments in 2000, Bergère was named the Junior Olympic Diving Coach of the Year. He was also selected as the Junior Olympic Regional and Zone Coach of the Year in 1994 and '95.
Before he entered the coaching ranks, Bergère was a four-year member of the LaSalle University diving team and was named team captain during his senior year in 1986. Bergère also won the John L. Ludsom Award for Spirit, Loyalty and Dedication at LaSalle, qualities that can be seen in his approach to the sport as a coach.
Bergère graduated from LaSalle University in 1986 with dual bachelor of science degrees in personnel and labor relations and marketing. He and his wife Kimberly have four children: Sophie, Ian, Noelle and Connor.
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