Cliff English has been named head coach for Arizona State’s inaugural women’s triathlon team.

Cliff English has been named head coach for Arizona State’s inaugural women’s triathlon team, Vice President for University Athletics Ray Anderson announced on Thursday. English, with 15 years of elite-level triathlon coaching experience, including as USA Triathlon’s Elite National Team Coach, will build the foundation of the first NCAA Power Five women’s triathlon team.

“We have made a concerted effort to bring in top-tier coaches that not only strive for excellence within the sport, but coaches that will seek to develop our student-athletes as high-integrity individuals,” said Anderson. “The depth of Coach English’s experience and his ability to coach triathletes to success at every level in the sport made it clear he was the right choice to spearhead the creation of the Sun Devil Triathlon program.”

English, alongside Sun Devil Athletics’ Senior Women’s Administrator (SWA) Deana Garner-Smith, will seek to expand and enhance the experiences of women and girls through all facets of sports, and to use the platform to motivate and empower female student-athletes and to train future coaches.

“The chance to build an emerging NCAA triathlon program at Arizona State is an amazing opportunity, not only as the next step in my career, but for the sport of triathlon,” said English. “I have been involved with the triathlon community for over 25 years and have seen the changes, successes and challenges as the sport continues to grow. I want to thank Ray Anderson, Deana Garner-Smith and Rocky Harris for the ability to build an NCAA team and help lead the charge in the evolution of the sport of triathlon.”

In April, Sun Devil Athletics was one of 10 NCAA schools to receive the multi-year Women’s Triathlon Emerging Sport Grant from the USA Triathlon Foundation. The grant was created to drive the establishment of NCAA women’s varsity triathlon programs. ASU is the first NCAA Power-Five conference school to officially adopt the sport of triathlon. Along with the 10 grant recipients, 12 NCAA schools pledged their intention to sponsor varsity triathlon, including several Pac-12 institutions, by signing the NCAA Emerging Sport proposal.

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