A two-year and eight-time All-America selection, he is a former world record holder in the 1500-meter freestyle (1972), the 400-meter freestlye (1973 and 1977) and the 4x100-meter freestlye (1977). He is a National, Pan American, and World Champion, and a 1972 Olympic gold medalist. At the 1973 World Championships he set a world record in the 400-meter freestyle, in the process becoming the first man in history to swim that race in less than four minutes, and was later named the 1973 World Swimmer of the Year. At the 1977 NCAA Championships, he was All-America in the 100-yard freestyle and 200-yard Individual Medley, the first Wildcat to score in an individual NCAA Championship event. He pioneered negative split swimming (swimming the second half of the race faster than the first), and during his career was ranked in the top-six in every freestyle event, from the mile to the 50. In 1990, he was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame. He is also a world renowned sprint freestyle coach and at the time of induction was beginning his 11th season with the UA swimming program, where he had coached numerous national champions. He is also a professional artist, and some of his work could be seen on several walls in Arizona's McKale Memorial Center and in galleries in Tucson and Northern California.