ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- University of Michigan rowing head coach Mark Rothstein announced the hiring of Krystina Sarff as assistant coach on Monday, Aug. 18. Sarff helped lead the University of San Diego rowing team to its best season in program history last season after coaching the novice program at the University of Florida from 2011-13.
"It is with great excitement that I welcome Krystina Sarff to our coaching staff here at Michigan," Rothstein said. "Krystina will bring great knowledge, enthusiasm and work ethicto the program. I remember Krystina from her days as an All-American at Central Florida and as a rower on the national team. She has done a fabulous job of transferring her rowing talent into coaching talent. Everywhere that she has been as a coach, she has had success. Most importantly, she is a great person, and she is a great fit for Michigan and for Michigan rowing."
In her role with the rowing program, Sarff will be responsible for coaching and developing the novice program, recruiting and evaluating prospective student-athletes and coordinating with the athletic communications office.
"I am incredibly honored to be given the opportunity to join such a prestigious rowing program," Sarff said. "The tradition, integrity and level of excellence expected and achieved in Michigan's athletic and academic sectors is world class. I look forward to working with Coach Rothstein and his staff to continue the winning tradition that is Michigan Athletics. Go Blue!"
Last year at USD, Sarff oversaw the development of walk-on athletes, coached the varsity crews and managed recruiting responsibilities for the Toreros. She helped USD win the 2014 West Coast Conference Rowing championship and earn the program's first top-20 ranking in the CRCA/USRowing Coaches Poll. USD earned its first bid to the NCAA Rowing Championships last season, finishing 15th overall.
Before arriving in San Diego, Sarff managed all aspects of the University of Florida club novice team. She guided the program to unprecedented success, helping the Gators reach No. 1 in the ACRA national rankings in April 2013. Sarff led Florida's WN8+ crew to victories at the 2013 SIRA Regional Championships and the 2013 FIRA State Championships. She also helped the Florida's novice eight earn a fourth-place finish at the prestigious Dad Vail Regatta, competing against NCAA Division I programs. In 2011-12, the Gators won the FIRA state championship, finished fourth at the SIRA Regional Championship and finished the season No. 4 in the ACRA national rankings.
While coaching at Florida, Sarff served as an intern in the University of Florida NCAA Strength and Conditioning office, working with student-athletes five days a week. She also worked as a teaching assistant in UF's Department of Tourism, Recreation, and Sport Management and was hired by the UF Teaching Center as a Research and Business Writing tutor for student-athletes.
A three-time All-American at the University of Central Florida, Sarff graduated cum laude in 2007 with a Bachelor of Arts in interdisciplinary studies, rowing in the first varsity eight and helping the Knights earn their first appearance in the NCAA Rowing Championships. Among other athletic and academic honors during her collegiate career, Sarff was a three-year captain and CRCA Scholar-Athlete. She earned UCF's Most Valuable Rower award three years in a row.
Upon completing her bachelor's from UCF, Sarff earned an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship that allowed her to pursue a Master of Arts in rhetoric and composition at UCF in 2009 while competing for USRowing and earning her USRowing coaching certification. Sarff will earn her doctorate in sport management from the University of Florida this fall, writing a dissertation on gender identity development and women's empowerment in rowing.
Sarff also served as a graduate assistant coach at the University of Central Florida in 2008 and as a volunteer coach at Hillsborough High School in 2010.
Contact: Jeffrey Weinstein (734) 763-4423