Ryan Purdy joined the Gopher Swimming staff in May 2011 after spending three seasons as an assistant coach at Fresno State University. Purdy is serving his second stint at the U of M, after beginning his collegiate coaching career as a volunteer assistant with the Minnesota women's program in 2005-06 and 2007-08.
In his three seasons with the Bulldogs, Purdy served as the sprint coach and recruiting coordinator for a NCAA Division I Fresno State program that was reestablished in 2008. One of his top athletes was Dani Yoho, a freestyle sprinter, who contributed to breaking six Fresno State records at the WAC Championships.
Previous to his coaching tenure at Fresno State, Purdy spent two seasons (2005-06 and 2007-08) as the volunteer assistant coach for the Minnesota women's swimming and diving team, assisting co-head coaches, Kremer and Terry Nieszner. While coaching the middle distance and distance group with Kremer, Purdy was significantly involved in the day-to-day program operations of the swim team. During his tenure with the Gophers, the team made huge strides, breaking numerous school records and winning the Big Ten championship in 2008, and placing 13th at the NCAA Championship meet. At the time, the 13th place finish tied the second highest finish in the history of Minnesota women's swimming and diving. During his coaching stint at Minnesota, Purdy had the opportunity to assist in coaching Christine Jennings, who swam for the United States at the 2008 World Open Water Championships. In addition, he helped coach Jillian Tyler who represented Canada in the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China.
Purdy was the associate senior director and coach with the Mission Viejo Nadadores in Mission Viejo, Calif., from 2006-07. While coaching the Nadadores, he was the primary coach for numerous senior sectional qualifiers and was selected as the coach for the Southern California Swimming All-Star Team that won the 2006 Western Zone Championship title. From 2002-05, Purdy served as the senior coach of the North Shore Swim Club in Duluth, Minn. In addition, he was head coach of the girls' swim team at Two Harbors High School in Two Harbors, Minn., and the assistant coach for the boys' and girls' swimming and diving team at Superior Senior High School in Superior, Wis.
A native of Fort Atkinson, Wis., Purdy graduated from the Minnesota-Duluth in 2005 with a B.F.A. in Art Education. He is currently pursuing his Master's of Education in Applied Kinesiology with an emphasis in Sport and Exercise Science at the University of Minnesota.