Skip to main content

The City Journals

Swimming coach honored

Apr 03, 2018 03:29PM ● By Cassie Goff

Head Coach Todd Etherington received a proclamation in his honor from Cottonwood Heights City. (Dan Metcalf/Cottonwood Heights)

By Cassie Goff | [email protected]

Cottonwood Heights aquatics head coach Todd Etherington received a proclamation in his honor from the city council on Feb. 13, which recognizes that day as Todd Etherington Day. He recently received the 5A Coach of the Year award by the Utah High School Activities Association, part of the reason for the recognition.

The council chambers were filled to capacity with residents, athletes, family and friends to support Etherington during the reading of the proclamation, which praised Etherington for his influence of excellence within the lives of Brighton High School swimmers.

“The city wants to recognize the athletes as well,” said Mayor Pro Tem Mike Shelton as he gestured to the audience.

Etherington, asked to say a few words, said, “As an athlete, you have to learn how to fail and how to recover from those failures to make ourselves better.”

He continued with a story from one of his previous swimmers. The athlete was feeling immensely disheartened after an event which he perceived as failure. “All I could ask him was, ‘Was that the best you could do at that time?’ He said yes. And I asked why we were still talking about it.”

“That’s all I ask that these students do. The best they can,” Etherington said.

“You may not see the results of your hard work at that moment. Maybe, it’s seen four or five years later down the road,” Etherington continued. “You will always see results based on the effort you put in.”

Etherington thanked the council for the award, but could not take full credit. “I have to thank everyone that came before me. They are the reason for the success.”

 “I view these awards as a direct result of the students I have the privilege of working with on a daily basis,” Etherington concluded as he gestured behind him to the full room.  

After Etherington spoke, Councilmember Scott Bracken asked that anyone who had been coached by Etherington stand. Most of the crowd in the chambers rose, some of whom took state during this last swim season (see story).

Etherington began swimming during his teenage years, where he qualified for nationals seven years in a row. He continued to swim for the University of Utah during his college career before graduating with a bachelor’s degree. He started coaching at Canyon Racquet Club, which jumpstarted his career. He has coached many swim camps including the Local Swim Committee swim camps and the Western Zone Select Camp and also coached the Utah Western Zone Team for nine years. He has been voted the Utah Swimming Age Group Coach of the Year eight times.