Title: Head Coach
Experience: 27th Year
Alma Mater: Chico State, '77
Bio: After 29 years with Sacramento State women’s gymnastics (26 as head coach), Kim Hughes has developed a program from the Div. II ranks and created a model of success at the Div. I level. However, despite all of his previous success, not many people would have predicted how quickly the Hornets would adapt to the Western Athletic Conference.
In its first season in the league, Sacramento State captured the WAC title and earned a spot in the NCAA West Regional. That performance made Hughes the West Region and WAC Coach of the Year.
While the WAC championship was a first for the Hornets, it was definitely not the program’s first league crown. In fact, Sacramento State has won six league titles in the last seven years. The streak began with back-to-back Western Independent Conference titles in 2000 and 2001 and then two Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Championships (2002-03). After finishing second in 2004, the Hornets reclaimed the MPSF crown with a convincing two-point victory in 2005. For his efforts, Hughes was named MPSF Women’s Gymnastics Coach of the Year following the 2002 season.
Individually, the Hornets have advanced 25 gymnasts to the NCAA regional since 1994. That list includes three in 2005 and four in 2004. Hughes has also coached Terri Meyer to the NCAA Div. II beam title in 1984, Rebecca Seebirt to three USAG vault titles (1994, 1995, 1997), Natalie Cadondon to the USAG all-around title in 1995 and Toni Petersen to the 2000 floor crown in the NIT. In addition, the Hornets have earned 40 All-America honors during his tenure.
In the classroom, the gymnastics team has also flourished under Hughes. In the spring of 2006, the team had a 3.05 team gpa. That total included 13 student-athletes who were above a 3.0 and seven who posted better than a 3.5.
As an educator within the sport of gymnastics, Hughes has received an invitation to teach at the NCAA Youth Education through Sport clinic (YES) since 1995 (and plans to do so again in 2006).
His knowledge of the sport, coupled with his enthusiasm for teaching, has presented numerous opportunities for Hughes to coach at varying levels of competition.
A 1976 graduate of Chico State with a B.A. in physical education, Hughes competed collegiately for the Wildcats after a successful high school gymnastics career. He was the Northern California high school still rings champion as a senior in 1971. He joined the Hornet staff as an assistant to the women’s gymnastics program in 1978 and was named head coach in 1982.
During his collegiate coaching career, Hughes served as a member of the Western Regional Committee while acting as the Western Regional meet director in 1987. When the Hornets were a member of the Northern California Athletic Conference, Hughes served as commissioner of gymnastics from 1982-84 and was named conference coach of the year in 1984.
With Sacramento State’s move to Div. I in 1991 and the NCAA’s decision to drop a Div. II championship, Hughes worked to provide postseason competition opportunities for smaller collegiate gymnastics programs. He twice served as Western Region chairperson for the USAG where he was involved with developing the USAG collegiate championship into a viable national competition open to men’s and women’s varsity and club programs which qualify in a format similar to the NCAA selection.
An active community leader, Hughes is involved with the United Way, serving as the athletics department representative on the campus committee for seven years. He was a cosponsor of the Special Olympics gymnastics competition held at Sacramento State from 1985-87. He also has been the athletics department’s union representative since 1993.
Hughes rounds out his coaching resumé with various club appointments, including nearly 20 years with the Nor-Cal Gymnastics Camp in Santa Cruz, Calif. He has also worked for the River City Gymnastics Club in Sacramento as well as the Chico and El Dorado Hills Gymnastics Clubs.
Hughes holds a master’s degree in physical education from Sacramento State. He and his wife, Darla, have two children, 22-year-old Jonathan and 20-year-old Jordan.
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