Sports Heroes Who Served: Olympic Shooting Medalist Now Head Coach at Naval Academy

1 year ago

Sports Heroes Who Served is a series that highlights the accomplishments of athletes who served in the U.S. military.

Michael "Mike" Anti is a sport shooter, a retired Army major and a marksman in the Army World Class Athlete Program.

He competed at the 1992, 2000, 2004 and 2008 Olympics in the 50-meter small-bore rifle events and won a silver medal in the three positions event in 2004.

In 2009 he retired from the Army and became assistant rifle coach at the U.S. Air Force Academy. Then in 2017 he became the head coach at the U.S. Naval Academy.

Anti joined the Army in January 1988 and was stationed in Korea with the 503rd Infantry Regiment before being assigned to the U.S. Army Marksmanship Unit at Fort Benning, Georgia, as an international rifle shooter from 1991 to 1994.

While at Ft. Benning, Anti earned his Airborne Badge and Ranger Tab. In 1994, he was assigned to the 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, Texas, and following this assignment, Anti was reassigned to the USAMU in 1998.

Anti learned to shoot at a junior club when he was nine so he could hunt in North Carolina with his father, who was also a rifle coach for the Marine Corps and the Naval Academy. 

Anti went on to become a four-time All-American at West Virginia University, where he led the WVU rifle team to three National Collegiate Athletic Association Championships. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in business from WVU in 1987.

During his first season in charge of the Navy rifle program in 2017-18, Anti guided the Midshipmen to their best finish in program history at the Great America Rifle Conference championship after finishing third overall. 

In the 2018-19 season, Anti coached Navy to the NCAA National Championship for the first time since 2011, and the Midshipmen placed seventh overall in the national championship. 

Anti guided the Naval Academy to its second-straight NCAA Championship qualification during the 2019-20 season. The Midshipmen qualified seventh overall in the national tournament field before the event's cancellation due to COVID-19

During the 2020 to 2021 season, Anti led Navy to a sixth-place finish at the GARC championships. 

No stranger to the Navy rifle program, Anti's father Ray, led the Midshipmen for 12 years from 1986 through the 1998 season following a distinguished 30-year career in the Marine Corps.

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