AMES, Iowa – Iowa State wrestling coach Kevin Dresser, the 2019 NWCA National Coach of the Year, has agreed to a contract extension through June 30, 2026.
“We are thrilled to know Coach Dresser will be leading our wrestling program for another five years,” Director of Athletics Jamie Pollard said. “Coach Dresser has restored the excitement in our wrestling program with his tenacity and relentless energy. He has surrounded himself with outstanding assistant coaches who share his vision for the future of our wrestling program. I look forward to continuing to help them achieve their goals.”
Iowa State, which went 9-3 (4-1 Big 12) in dual action this season, had two Big 12 champions in David Carr and Gannon Gremmel and qualified eight wrestlers for the 2021 NCAA Championships. It’s the third season in a row that the Cyclones have qualified eight or more wrestlers for the national tournament – the program’s best streak since 2008-10.
Dresser has rebuilt the Cyclone wrestling program from the ground up since his arrival in 2017. His efforts have seen Iowa State climb on the national stage, highlighted most recently by a national championship for Carr at 157 pounds in 2021 – Iowa State’s first individual champion since 2015 (Kyven Gadson). Gremmel, a heavyweight, also made a run to the podium in St. Louis, finishing fifth to garner All-America honors. The Cyclones finished tied for 13th at the 2021 NCAA Championships.
Dresser has elevated the program annually. In his first season at Iowa State, Dresser took a team that won just one dual in 2016-17 and led them to an 8-10 dual mark. The following year, he was named the 2019 NWCA National Coach of the Year and Big 12 Coach of the Year while mentoring Jarrett Degen and Willie Miklus to All-America honors.
The 2019-20 season saw Dresser’s program make yet another leap. Iowa State went 7-1 in Big 12 duals, tied with Oklahoma State for the best record in the conference. For the first time since 2014, ISU produced two individual Big 12 champions (Ian Parker and David Carr), and the Cyclones were set to send nine to the NCAA Championships prior to the event’s cancellation due to COVID-19.
“I want to thank Jamie for this contract extension,” Dresser said. “I am very excited for my staff and this team moving forward. The extension is a testament to the hard work of this staff and our team. There is much more to accomplish and we are all excited to watch this program continue to grow and succeed. Thank you again to Jamie and all of those in our athletics department who have made these first four years so productive.”
Terms of Dresser’s new contract will be announced at a later date.