Ted Minnis is in his fifth year as The Friends of Harvard Water Polo Head Coach. Minnis is the 10th coach in Harvard men's and women's water polo history, and the first individual to serve in the role since the position was endowed in May 2013.
Both programs continued to show improvement in Minnis' third season at the helm. The men's team placed third in the CWPA Northern Division, the highest finish since '07, before taking seventh at Easterns for the second straight season. The Crimson also won 15 games, its highest win total since winning 19 games in 2002. Freshman Ben Zepfel ’16 also became the first Crimson student-athlete to earn CWPA Northern Division first team honors since 2009, while the team set a new CWPA record by winning nine Rookie of the Week awards.
On the women's side, Minnis directed the Crimson to its longest win streak, eight games, since water polo became an NCAA sport in 2001. Harvard ended the year 18-16 to give itself three consecutive winning seasons for the first time since 2000-02. The squad also went on to place sixth at the Eastern Championships, tied for the fifth-best finish in program history. Aisha Price ’13 (first team), Ariel Dukes ’15 (second team) and Yoshi Andersen ’16 (second team) were all named to the CWPA All-Southern Division team.
In 2012-13, Minnis directed both programs to double-digit wins and berths in the CWPA Eastern Championships. The men’s team finished fourth at the CWPA Northern Division Championships, its highest finish since 2007, on its way to a seventh-place finish at Easterns. The men’s team also performed well out of the pool, as 13 Crimson were named CWPA Student-Athletes for the second consecutive season.
On the women’s side, Harvard completed its second straight winning season (17-12) in 2012 and won four out of five regular season Southern Division contests. The squad, which finished in seventh place at the CWPA Eastern Championships, had one of the biggest wins in recent years, as it took down No. 20 Hartwick, 12-11, on Senior Night. Six Crimson players won a combined 10 Player of the Week awards while Devan Kennifer ’12 (first team) and Elise Molnar ’13 (second team) were named All-Southern Division.
In his first season as a collegiate head coach and first year in charge of the Crimson, Minnis showed immediate success. The men's squad won its most games (12) in three seasons and matched its CWPA Northern Division Championship finish (fifth) from the previous year. The men's team also finished third at the Ivy Championships and boasted 13 CWPA Scholar-Athletes and ACWPC All-Academic award winners.
The women's team was also instantly successful during Minnis' first season. The Crimson women logged 17 victories, its most wins in six years, and its first above .500 record since 2005. The team had two CWPA Southern Division All-Conference players in Devan Kennifer ’12 and Monica Zdrojewski ’12 and had five different players earn CWPA Southern Division Player of the Week, Defensive Player of the Week or Rookie of the Week honors during the season.
Minnis, who has competed and coached at the youth, club and high school level, came to Cambridge after serving as the interim director of athletics, aquatics director and head water polo and swim coach as Castilleja School in Palo Alto, Calif.
Minnis is a veteran coach at the Stanford Club. During his 10-plus years of service, he won two Junior Olympic bronze medals, a U.S. Club Championship and finished among the top 10 at various national tournaments numerous times. Minnis served as the head coach for the Olympic Development Program Pacific Zone for three years and in 2009 worked with the National Youth team staff. Most recently, his teams picked up a pair of silver medals at the 16 and Under Olympic Development Regional Championship and Zone Championship.
In 2007, Minnis was named the USA Water Polo Development Coach of the Year and in 2005 and 2007 was a Positive Coaching Alliance finalist for coach of the year.