Prep Coach of the Year: Tom Hudson

Published: Jun. 29, 2022 at 1:28 AM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

LARAMIE, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) - 32 seasons, over 100 individual state champions coached, 21 team state championships, one National Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association Coach of the Year award, and 26 Wyoming Swimming Coach of the Year awards later, Tom Hudson’s career came to an end in early June.

“Some things had to fall into place, personally, with my wife and I and just future employment and planning and things like that and they fell into place and we both made the decision the same day to retire from Albany County School District together,” said former Laramie Swimming and Diving Head Coach Tom Hudson.

Finishing his career with a dual meet record of 843-124-5, Hudson was inducted into the Wyoming Coaches Association in 2016 and the National Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association in 2022.

Hudson won ten consecutive state titles (five boys, five girls) in his last five years at Laramie. However, the start of the Sheridan, Wyo. native and former University of Wyoming swimmer’s (backstroke) coaching career did not start as smoothly as one might think.

“[I followed] a legend like Layne Kopischka, who coached here 20 years, won 18 state championships, and then my first year I come in and get 10th at state,” said Hudson. “That was a low, but it was also a high to me because I was the new coach at Laramie High School and I was thrilled. It was the dream job of my life.”

Hudson quickly turned his programs around, winning his first girls title in his second year (1993) and his first boys state title in his sixth year (1997). He would eventually lead the Lady Plainsmen to eight championships and the Plainsmen to 13 championships.

Hudson said it was Laramie itself that kept him going for so long.

“The kids of Laramie, I kinda feel like I raised and had a part in their development,” said Hudson. “I wanted to stay with that and also just Laramie as a community, we just were grounded here, my wife was the principal at the UW Lab School, my kids all grew up here, it was a great place to raise a family.”

Hudson has lived in Laramie since 1986, which was when he took over the Laramie Swim Club. The Gem City is a forever home for the Hudson family and Tom is also known for being a guy that will go the extra mile for others.

“He’s just one of those guys, if you needed a shirt and he had one he’d give it to you,” said Laramie High School Athletic Director Ron Wagner. “He’d give the shirt off his back to you. That’s the kind of guy he is and he’s genuine and I think that’s maybe one of those qualities that kids can see in him, as well, [which make] his programs attractive.”

Hudson said his goal was to make sure that every LHS swimmer knew that they belonged and that, though there are mixed emotions, he is ready for life’s next chapter.

“I get emotional when I talk about it, but my initial emotion is sadness, ya know? Sadness that it’s over but then, and most people have shared this, they’re sad that it’s over but they’re very excited for [my wife] Margaret and I for what’s next in our life,” said Hudson.

Congratulations to Tom Hudson, Wyoming News Now Prep Coach of the Year.

Copyright 2022 Wyoming News Now. All rights reserved.