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Jun 21, 2024

Clemson Names Adrienne Martelli 6th Rowing Head Coach

Clemson, SC – Clemson Director of Athletics Graham Neff named Adrienne Martelli as Head Coach of the Rowing program on Friday. Martelli is an Olympic medalist and has spent the past five seasons at California, most recently as Associate Head Coach, finishing in the top ten nationally each season. Martelli was named to the coaching staff for the United States’ 2024 Paris Olympic Team on June 10.

During her time at Cal, the Golden Bears finished in the top ten nationally in all four NCAA Championship events they competed in, including a 9th-place finish in 2024, and coached six total All-Americans. The 2V8 that she coached finished third at NCAAs in 2023. At Cal, she was named the Assistant Coach of the Year as voted on by the Cal Athletics community. 

“We are thrilled to have a coach of Adrienne Martelli’s caliber as a competitor and coach leading our Rowing program and welcome her to the Clemson Family,” said Neff. “Our Rowing program has the pieces in place to be among the most competitive in the nation, and Coach Martelli brings with her a wealth of experience at the highest levels of the sport, while also placing a high value on education. We’re excited for the future of Clemson Rowing.”

“I am thankful to Graham Neff, Stephanie Ellison-Johnson and the administration at Clemson for entrusting me to lead this program,” said Martelli, who leaves for Paris on July 5 for the Olympic Games. “We want to be fast, and it’s our top priority to compete at the highest levels on the water and in the classroom. Clemson has all of the resources to be a power in this sport. We are well aware of the expectations at a place like Clemson, and eager for the opportunity to go to the next level.” 

A decorated rower herself, Martelli’s athletic career is highlighted by a bronze medal in the quadruple sculls at the 2012 London Olympics and participation in the 2016 Rio Olympics, where she finished fifth. Additionally, she is a four-time medalist at the World Rowing Championships, including the Gold in the Women’s Straight Four in 2015. 

Martelli attended the University of Washington where she joined the Rowing team as a walk-on, and eventually became a First Team All-American and National Champion in 2008 as part of the 1V4 boat. She was named team captain her senior year, and raced at the 2009 U23 World Championships, winning silver alongside Clemson Hall of Fame inductee Jessica Leidecker.

In 2023, she was an Assistant Coach for US Rowing at the World Championships, helping the Women’s Eight to Silver and the Women’s Four to a fifth-place finish. 

Before her successful stint at Cal, Martelli coached at Northeastern University, where she guided the Huskies to three consecutive Colonial Athletic Association championships and three NCAA Championship appearances.

Originally from University Place, Wa. Martelli joins Clemson with her husband Joe Mallen.

For more updates on Clemson Women’s Rowing, follow at @ClemsonRowing.