ACADEMIC INTEGRATION COMPETITIVE EXCELLENCE

IN DIVISION I ATHLETICS

 

Erik Farrar Resigns as Harvard Water Polo Coach

Photo courtesy of Gil Talbot.

Erik Farrar, coach of the men’s and women’s water polo teams at Harvard, announced his resignation Friday afternoon. Farrar departs after six years during which he committed himself to recruiting student-athletes who would succeed both in the classroom and in the water.

“Over the last 25 years, I have coached 35 seasons of men's and women's water polo combined,” Farrar said. “Following that dream required me to set aside other pursuits that have long held my interest. I have reached a point in my life when I must now follow those other paths.  I have much I wish to accomplish in life and also in the sport of water polo - goals that cannot be achieved in my role as coach of two varsity teams.”
In six seasons, Farrar has guided the women’s team to five top-three Northern Division finishes and the men to four. The women advanced to the Eastern Championships five times during his tenure including this past spring, while the men made four appearances, highlighted by semi-final appearances in 2004 and 2008.

Fifteen women and eight men have earned Collegiate Water Polo Association All-Conference honors over the last six seasons. In 2004, Rick Offsay was named to the All-America Team.  In 2009, Devan Kennifer was named CWPA North Team Rookie of the Year and Rookie of the tournament at the 2009 CWPA Championships.  Bret Voith earned similar honors at the 2007 CWPA Championships.

In 2009-10, the Harvard men owned the second-highest grade-point average in the nation. Individually, nine men's athletes received ACWPC All-Academic honors while 12 were named to the CWPA Scholar-Athlete team. During Farrar’s tenure, 45 men and 38 women have been named to the CWPA Scholar-Athlete teams.

 “I have often been heard to say over the last six years that ‘I have the best job at Harvard’ ­­-- a reflection on the extraordinary colleagues with whom I worked and the student-athletes whom I coached,” Farrar continued. “I take great pride in my stewardship of the Harvard water polo program and of what we accomplished in the past six years. With the returning men's and women's teams and the strong incoming classes, I leave the program on a far more secure and stable footing than the one I inherited. It is now a program poised to fulfill its long-dormant potential for national excellence, and I look forward to seeing that potential realized.”
 
“We thank Erik for his dedication to Harvard Water Polo and the education of our student-athletes,” said Bob Scalise, the Nichols Family Director of Athletics. “We will certainly miss his presence in the Department, and we wish him well with his future endeavors.”

A national search for Farrar’s successor will begin immediately.