American University named Mark Cody its head wrestling coach on July 1, 2002. A former assistant at Oklahoma State University, Cody will lead the reinvigoration of AU's wrestling program, which is looking to re-establish itself among the nations's successful programs.
We are extremely excited to have Mark Cody in place to guide the revitalization of our wrestling program, said George. He has an outstanding background at the highest level in the sport and has been a winner at every stop in his career. We look forward to him making a distinct impact on American University and its wrestling program.
Cody comes to the American after spending the past two years as an assistant coach at national powerhouse Oklahoma State, a program that has won the most NCAA Championships of any school in the country. As an assistant, Cody helped Oklahoma State to a Big 12 Championship and a fifth-place finish at this years NCAA Championships, where the Cowboys crowned an individual national champion and four All-Americans.
In addition to its success on the mat, Oklahoma State was just as proficient in the classroom. The squad earned recognition from the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) as a Top-25 academic team, and two Cowboys were named Academic All-America by the NWCA. Nine wrestlers were also named to the Academic All-Big 12 team.
Cody joined the Oklahoma State program after 12 years as the upper-weights coach for the University of Nebraska. During his time in Lincoln, he was responsible for bringing in some of the nations top recruiting classes. While at Nebraska, Cody coached two Huskers to national titles, heavyweight Tolly Thompson in 1995 and 197-pounder Brad Vering in 2000. Cody also coached 23 Cornhuskers to All-America honors.
I am very excited for this outstanding opportunity and would like to personally thank President Ladner, Tom George, and Alan Meltzer, said Cody. This is a great challenge and I welcome it with open arms. I am extremely impressed with the level of support for the program that I have seen through the interview process.
We are going to take it one day at a time and begin to build a program that will compete at a high level in the years to come. It is my goal to bring student-athletes to American University that are serious about both their academic and wrestling careers, he said.
Before joining the Nebraska staff in 1987-88, Cody spent a season in Stillwater, Ok., as an assistant coach at Oklahoma State in 1986-87. He also worked as an assistant at Bloomsburg University in 1985-86 and for the University of Missouri in 1984-85.
Cody helped develop Rulon Gardner, who captured a Greco-Roman gold medal at heavyweight at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, and trained with 2000 Olympic Greco-Roman silver medalist Matt Lindland.
As a student-athlete, Cody was a three-time All-American. He spent two years at the State University of New York at Delhi before transferring to Missouri in 1982. He graduated from Missouri in 1984 with a bachelor of science degree in business. A member of the New York Athletic Club, he was a 198-pound finalist at the 1988 U.S. Olympic Trials.
A native of Binghamton, N.Y., Cody is engaged to be married to Holly Joy Sano in August. The couple plans to reside in the Washington, D.C., metro area.
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