Vanessa Bergman Thelin Athlete Profile

Vanessa Bergman Thelin

Vanessa Bergman Thelin
Position: Diving Height: 5-1 Roster Years: 1990-1994 Hometown: Los Altos, CA Hall of Fame: 2005

  • 2005 Women's Swimming & Diving




All-America

  • 1991 CSCAA Honorable Mention 1-meter board
  • 1991 CSCAA Honorable Mention 3-meter board
  • 1992 CSCAA First Team 3-meter board
  • 1993 CSCAA First Team 1-meter board
  • 1993 CSCAA Honorable Mention 3-meter board
  • 1994 CSCAA First Team 1-meter board
  • 1994 CSCAA Honorable Mention 3-meter board

2005 Hall of Fame Inductee

Vanessa Bergman Thelin had a definitive power and grace that BYU diving coach Keith Russell recognized immediately. She absorbed instruction like a sponge and took it to the pool with complete control.

“There was total beauty in the mechanics of her actions,” Russell recalled. “She had all the skills; it was just a matter of honing them.”

Thelin fulfilled Russell’s vision for her during her decorated diving career at BYU from 1990–94; she also continue to excel after leaving BYU, making the USA National Team and being an Olympic Trials finalist in 1988.

Nationally, Thelin received seven All-American citations during her collegiate career. In 1991 Thelin placed 10th on the 1-meter board and 12th on the 3-meter board; in 1992 she placed sixth on the 3-meter board; and in 1993, she placed second on the 1-meter board and 12th on the 3-meter board. Her senior year Thelin placed 10th on the 3-meter board and became one of an elite group of BYU athletes who have won individual national titles when she was crowned the NCAA champion on the 1-meter board.

At the regional level Thelin dominated the 3-meter board, taking first her freshman, sophomore, and junior years. In 1991 Thelin took second on the 1-meter board; in 1992 and 1993 she placed fourth on the 1-meter board; and in 1994 she placed first on the 1-meter board and second on the 3-meter board.

In the Western Athletic Conference, Thelin was champion in both the 1- and 3-meter events in 1992, 1993, and 1994. She was also all-conference on the 1-meter board all four years and all-conference on the 3-meter board her sophomore, junior, and senior seasons. In 1993 Thelin was named Athlete of the Meet at the 1993 WAC Swimming and Diving Championships; in 1994 she was also recognized as the WAC Diver of the Year.

Thelin’s senior season she was a BYU Cougar Sport Athlete of the Month and received the Cougar Club Outstanding Senior Award. In addition, the Utah Network for Girls and Women in Sport named her Swimming/Diving Sportswoman of the Year.

Thelin led BYU with her example of efficiency and creativity, consistently embellishing and expanding the techniques Russell taught. “BYU divers now owe their gratitude to Vanessa,” Russell said. “Everyone who has followed her has benefited from the things I learned coaching her.”

Thelin graduated from BYU in 1994 with a bachelor’s degree in recreational therapy. In 1995 she went on to take first at the U.S. Olympic Festival on the 3-meter board. She also placed second on the 1-meter board at the Outdoor Senior Nationals and participated in the International Diving Meet in Germany. In 1996 she dove in the U.S. National Diving Trials.

Thelin and her husband, Jason, currently live in Alpine, Utah. Vanessa is an active homemaker and mother of four children, one boy (Tanner) and three girls (Abby, Grace, and Lilly).

Personal

  • B.S. in recreational therapy from BYU, 1994
  • Married to Jason with four children

Career Highlights

  • NCAA National Champion in the 1-meter 1994
  • WAC Diver of the Year 1994
  • Seven-time All-American
  • First at the NCAA Zone E Meet on the 3-meter and second on the 1-meter to qualify for NCAAs 1991-92
  • All-WAC for placing second on the 1-meter 1991
  • All-WAC for first on both boards 1992-93
  • First on both the 1-meter and 3-meter boards in prelims of the U.S. Diving Senior Nationals 1993
  • Member of the USA National Team
  • Former BYU and WAC record holder on the 1-meter and 3-meter boards

Before BYU

  • Senior level diver with Stanford Club team
  • Prep All-American in 1988, 1989, 1990
  • Junior Champion on tower in 1985, on 1-meter in 1988 and 3-meter in 1987, 1989
  • World Champion in 1-meter in tower at Olympic Festival
  • U.S. Senior National Qualifier 1986-89

After BYU

  • Competed on the U.S. National Team
  • Dove in the U.S. National Diving Trials 1996
  • Participated in an International Diving Meet in Germany

Post BYU Honors and Societies

  • Was an Olympic Trials finalist in 1998
  • Took first at the U.S. Olympic Festival on the 3-meter board
  • Placed second on the 1-meter board at the Outdoor Senior Nationals
  • Inducted into the BYU Hall of Fame in 2005


1990-1991 | Freshman Year

  • All-American for 10th on the 1-meter board and 12th on the 3-meter board
  • First at the NCAA Zone E Meet on the 3-meter and second on the 1-meter to qualify for NCAAs
  • All-WAC for placing second on the 1-meter
  • First on the 3-meter at the Kimball Classic

1991-1992 | Sophomore Year

  • Placed sixth on the 3-meter board to earn All-American citations
  • First at the NCAA Zone E Meet on the 3-meter and second on the 1-meter to qualify for NCAAs
  • All-WAC for first on both boards

1992-1993 | Junior Year

  • All-American for second on the 1-meter board and 12th on the 3-meter
  • All-WAC for first on both boards
  • Named Athlete of the Meet at the WAC Swimming and Diving Championships
  • Co-captain of the team
  • Improved her own WAC 3-meter record to 537.95 points
  • First on the 3-meter board at the Zone E Meet
  • First on both the 1-meter and 3-meter boards in prelims of the U.S. Diving Senior Nationals
  • Finished fifth on the 3-meter and seventh on the 1-meter

1993-1994 | Senior Year

  • NCAA Champion on the 1-meter board
  • WAC Diver of the Year
  • All-American for 10th on the 3-meter board and first on the 1-meter board
  • Placed first on the 1-meter board and second on the 3-meter board in regionals
  • All-WAC for first in the 1- and 3-meter events
  • BYU Cougar Sport Athlete of the Month
  • Cougar Club Outstanding Senior Award
  • Named Swimming/Diving Sportswoman of the Year by the Utah Network for Girls and Women in Sport