LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Nick Albiero learned early in his college career that a big win was not going to produce a big reaction from his coach.
"I would see replays of the videos when I would win," said Albiero, a senior on the U of L swimming team. "I'm like, 'You didn't do anything.'"
Last month, Albiero produced his biggest victory, beating a stellar field in the 200-yard butterfly to claim an NCAA championship. That one garnered at least a bit of a reaction from his coach, who is also his dad.
"Even my staff made fun of me," Arthur Albiero said. "''You finally let your hair down. You finally enjoyed the moment as a dad.' I said, 'I did for a few seconds there.' Then I got back to head coach, hat on."
His mom was watching on TV, stirring more than just her emotions.
"I am known to have a little accident when I get excited," Amy Albiero said. "So people will text me and go like, 'Was this a pee-in-your-pants type excitement?' And I'm like, 'Yeah, it was.'"
Amy and Arthur were both All-American swimmers in college. Amy runs Cardinal Aquatics swim club and coached Nick up through his high school years. Arthur has been U of L's head coach for 18 years and has coached Nick for the last four.
Both said they were careful not to push any of their three kids into the sport and that they've had to walk a fine line between coach and parent.
"It's brutal," Arthur Albiero said. "This is a path that you gotta love this thing, because it's not for everyone. "It's year-round. It's two practices a day, just about every day, very little time off. It's a lifestyle."
"They're gonna have a lot of coaches in their lives, but they're only gonna have one mom and one dad," Amy Albiero said. "And so really trying to find that balance between when they need me to be a coach and when they need me to be mom."
Now, the spotlight is on their middle child, looking to join several other Cardinal greats, not only as a National Champion but as an Olympian.
"I grew up swimming here and seeing those names on the wall," Nick Albiero said. "They're not only just swimmers, they're my friends. And so just getting to train with them and them having that impact on me, I wanted to be able to be a part of that group and that legacy.
"Olympics is the highest level of swimming you can get to. It's a dream. It's every swimmers dream."
"We always joke, but it's so true," Arthur Albiero added. "If you have a lane, you have a chance. And we're going to go to the Olympic Trials and just compete and give it all we got."
Nick's older brother, Estefan, swam for the Cardinals. And his younger sister, Gabi, just finished her freshman year at Louisville and has also qualified for the Olympic Trials.
They'll be leaving Thursday for the Trials, which will run June 13-20 in Omaha, Nebraska.
Copyright 2021 WDRB Media. All Rights Reserved.