Women's Rowing Coach George Jenkins Resigns

May 13, 2002

LOS ANGELES, Calif. - George Jenkins, who revived the USC women's rowing team into a nationally-competitive program in his nine years at Troy, announced his resignation today (May 13) to pursue a music career. He will step down at the end of the 2002 season in June.

'I've really enjoyed my time at USC,' said the 39-year-old Jenkins. 'It was an exciting period to be involved in the sport, as it grew tremendously at the NCAA level and here at USC. I'm proud to have been able to bring USC women's rowing to the level where it now competes equally with the best programs in the country. Now, I think the timing is right for me to step away and try something different in my life.'

Said USC senior associate athletic director Steve Lopes: 'George did an outstanding job building our women's rowing program. We now are on even footing with the top rowing programs in the nation. His hard-work and dedication to USC will be missed. We wish him the best as he gets into the music business.'

Lopes said a national search for Jenkins' replacement will begin soon.

Jenkins took over a Trojan program in September of 1993 that had fallen into disrepair. He built the team from no athletes on the roster to its present level of nearly 50 members, and from zero scholarships to the NCAA maximum of 20.

In 1998, he led USC to its first NCAA championship in the sport in the Varsity Fours division (the Trojans also won that event in the Pac-10s that year). In 2001, his Varsity Eight won the prestigious Jessop Whittier Cup by beating nine-time defending champion Washington at the San Diego Crew Classic, leading Troy to a No. 2 national ranking (the program's highest ever) and a first-ever Varsity Eight grand final appearance at the NCAAs (USC placed fourth). In his career, he coached an All-American (Ivelina Boteva) and eight All-Pac-10 choices.

The 2002 Women of Troy are currently ranked ninth nationally, having already upset No. 7 Stanford while also beating No. 18 Iowa and unranked UCLA and San Diego State. USC will compete at the upcoming Pac-10 Championships May 19 in Folsom, Calif., and the NCAA Championships May 31 to June 2 in Indianapolis, Ind.

Jenkins also has experience at the national and international levels. He coached the 1997 U.S. Senior 'B' Team, the 1993 U.S. Junior National Team, the Lightweight men's team at the 1990 U.S. Olympic Festival and the junior team at the 1989 U.S. Olympic Festival.

Prior to coming to USC, he was the men's varsity coach (1991-93), women's varsity coach (1991) and novice men's coach (1987) at his alma mater, UC Davis. He was the executive director of the Newport Beach (Calif.) Aquatic Center rowing club from 1987 to 1990.

Jenkins' younger brother, Stephan, is the lead singer of the popular rock band 'Third Eye Blind.'

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