SANTA BARBARA, Calif.
-- KAP 7 co-founder Wolf Wigo, the men's
water polo coach at UC-Santa Barbara since 2005, has added to his
workload as he was appointed Director of Water Polo and will assume
the coaching duties for the Gaucho women's program, as well as the
"I am excited about this appointment," said UCSB Athletics Director Gary Cunningham. "I hope Wolf elevates the women's program the way he has elevated the men's program. As women's water polo becomes a fully sponsored sport in the Big West Conference, I think Wolf will help us become a consistent contender for league championships and NCAA bids."
Cunningham said that he was basing his decision on the model that is already in place at such schools as UCLA and USC.
"I think our women's program is one that has a ton of potential," Wigo began. "Water polo is such a strong sport in this town, and this program really has an opportunity to succeed. I look forward to the chance to revitalize the program and get us to the top of the rankings, where we should be."
In his three years as the helm of the Gaucho men's program, Wigo has led the team to a 53-45 record, including 40-28 in the last two seasons. In 2006, UCSB won 21 matches, its first 20-win season since 1990. The 19-14 overall record that Santa Barbara posted in 2007 was highlighted by the program's first victory over Stanford since the 1985 season.
Prior to coming to UCSB, Wigo spent two years as head coach and administrator of the Saddleback El Toro Water Polo Club in Orange County, Calif. Under his direction, the program grew from 20 members to over 160 in 10 different age groups ranging from five to 60 years old. Wigo oversaw all aspects of the organization including fundraising, scheduling and supervision of seven assistant coaches. Wigo also served many of the same functions as the director of Ultimate Water Polo's "Tools of Champions" clinics, a position he held since 1999.
Wigo also conceived, produced and appeared in numerous water polo instructional videos.
In addition, Wigo gained four years of experience outside the pool as an equity option trader with Cole Rossler Capital Management, working on the floor of the Pacific Stock Exchange from 1997-2001.
While Wigo was working to further his coaching and business aspirations, he concurrently established himself as one of the world's premiere water polo players as an 11-year member of Team USA. In 1993, Wigo joined the nation's elite squad and in 1996 he became the first player hailing from east of the Rockies to make the US Olympic water polo team since 1956. Wigo competed in the 1996, 2000 and 2004 Olympic Games.
After scoring a team-leading 16 goals during the 2000 games in Sydney, Wigo was named to the five-player All-World First Team by NBC Sports and USA Water Polo, making him a finalist for World Water Polo Player of the Year. He completed his tenure with the national squad in 2004 by serving as Team USA's captain in Athens. Selected as USA Water Polo's Male Athlete of the Year in 1999, 2000 and 2003, Wigo also helped the Americans win gold at the 1997 FINA World Championships.
Wigo's collegiate career at Stanford University was nearly as distinguished. He earned All-America honors four straight years and led the Cardinal to back-to-back NCAA titles in 1993 and 1994. As a senior captain Wigo was named Stanford's Outstanding Male Senior Athlete and NCAA Player of the Year. This year, Wigo was named to the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation's 15th Anniversary First Team. The teams consisted of the best collegiate water polo players to have played in the conference and were selected by current coaches.
After earning his BA in political science from Stanford in 1995, Wigo spent the next two seasons as a graduate assistant coach on "The Farm" under the legendary Dante Dettamanti. He returned to help the Cardinal as a full-time assistant in 2001 when Stanford captured another NCAA championship.
In addition to his UCSB duties, Wigo also coaches for the Santa Barbara Water Polo Foundation.
Founded by aquatics greats Wigo and Bradley Schumacher in 2004 to design and build innovative world class products “for water polo players, by water polo players”, KAP7 is on the leading edge of the world market having partnered with Adolph Kiefer, owner of Kiefer Aquatics – the leading manufacturer of aquatics equipment in the United States.
partnership, KAP7 and Kiefer offers water polo balls, caps, suits,
goals and training tools through www.kiefer.com
on the internet, in addition to a 24-hour, seven day a week call
center operated by Kiefer.