Top coaches the last 20 years

Joe Daugherty

Well-known member
Greg Urbas,Eric Burnett, John Heffernan & Scotty Burnett are all tied for first place IMO!
2nd best as follows and in no specific order, HS Current Coaches Only,
Mike Heil, Todd Haverdil , Rowen from Perry, Hivnor, Jeff Lenard, Ricky Dubell,. There are many others but these guys have been raising the bar IMO.
 

matreturn

New member
Greg Urbas,Eric Burnett, John Heffernan & Scotty Burnett are all tied for first place IMO!
2nd best as follows and in no specific order, HS Current Coaches Only,
Mike Heil, Todd Haverdil , Rowen from Perry, Hivnor, Jeff Lenard, Ricky Dubell,. There are many others but these guys have been raising the bar IMO.
Your current list should have Hermes, Papesh and Laughlin in there. Last 20 years gotta go with Eric Burnett, Urbas and Jeff Jordan
 
People list the coaches on here with how many state titles they've won. Does that really make him great? It's debatable. In my opinion the impact a coach has on these young kids is what's being over looked on here. For example, the Burnetts or kulczycki have never won a state title as a coach to my knowledge but are some of the best coaches in Ohio.
 

TheFan1

Active member
People list the coaches on here with how many state titles they've won. Does that really make him great? It's debatable. In my opinion the impact a coach has on these young kids is what's being over looked on here. For example, the Burnetts or kulczycki have never won a state title as a coach to my knowledge but are some of the best coaches in Ohio.
I put Gary Wise on my list because of being such an ambassador to the sport, even on a national level.... Was when I wrestled 30 years ago against his kids (only state champ I ever wrestled, briefly, lol). He still is! Still going strong. Never sniffed a team trophy, but has done a ton for Ohio wrestling for decades.
 

Joe Daugherty

Well-known member
Jamie Milkovich. No one has done more with so little. Struggle just to get kids to come to matches, let alone practice.
Jamie has done some amazing things. BUT to say no one has done more with so little is not true. Mike Paporus build a dynasty with 30 guys in a senior class. With less than 300 students in RH HS he built an amazing program. JMO
 

BobPreusse

Active member
Not sure when they retired but the TERNES bros at Lorain Southview are at or near the top, if u look at the Big picture, what they did for kids who had nothing and a school that was so needy. Produced good teams on a statewide level. simply AWESOME.

i did article in Amateur Wr News 2 years ago, imo 8 hs coaches in last 30 years have a chance at becoming a Distinguished Member of National Wrestling Hall of Fame based on a fabulous record that would be recognized Nationally, i.e. the big leagues with the Gable's, John Smith, Kemp, Mike Milkovich and the like ----- 2 from Ohio Jeff Jordan and Greg Urbas. .....the other 6 Rocky Cozart, Brandon Fla-- Steve Powell, Easton PA-- Dave Crowell, Nazareth PA-- Ernie Jones, Tulsa Okla-- Jeff Buxton, Blair Academy-- Wayne Branstetter, Poway Calif.
 

bdhof

Well-known member
Not sure when they retired but the TERNES bros at Lorain Southview are at or near the top, if u look at the Big picture, what they did for kids who had nothing and a school that was so needy. Produced good teams on a statewide level. simply AWESOME.

i did article in Amateur Wr News 2 years ago, imo 8 hs coaches in last 30 years have a chance at becoming a Distinguished Member of National Wrestling Hall of Fame based on a fabulous record that would be recognized Nationally, i.e. the big leagues with the Gable's, John Smith, Kemp, Mike Milkovich and the like ----- 2 from Ohio Jeff Jordan and Greg Urbas. .....the other 6 Rocky Cozart, Brandon Fla-- Steve Powell, Easton PA-- Dave Crowell, Nazareth PA-- Ernie Jones, Tulsa Okla-- Jeff Buxton, Blair Academy-- Wayne Branstetter, Poway Calif.
Clearly, a lot of coaches could be thrown into the top "5 or 10" over the last 20 years as this thread asks. And clearly the top 2 are Jordan and Urbas. Two years ago there was a Yappi poll on this question (which is the ultimate decider in these questions), altho this was all time, not a 20-year span. The top 5 in that poll were the following:
1. Jeff Jordan - Graham 46%
2. Greg Urbas - SE 18%
3T. Harold Ferguson - SE 15%
3T. Mike Milkovich - Maple Heights 15%
5. Bill Barger - Walsh Jesuit 6%
 

bdhof

Well-known member
Clearly, a lot of coaches could be thrown into the top "5 or 10" over the last 20 years as this thread asks. And clearly the top 2 are Jordan and Urbas. Two years ago there was a Yappi poll on this question (which is the ultimate decider in these questions), altho this was all time, not a 20-year span. The top 5 in that poll were the following:
1. Jeff Jordan - Graham 46%
2. Greg Urbas - SE 18%
3T. Harold Ferguson - SE 15%
3T. Mike Milkovich - Maple Heights 15%
5. Bill Barger - Walsh Jesuit 6%
A lot of great discussion on that thread about these coaches. Another guy in that poll, Harold Kester - John Hay/Cleveland West, didn't get any votes but was Mike Milkovich before Mike Milkovich, dominating Ohio wrestling in the late 1930s thru the early 1950s.
 

Jim Behrens

Active member
Clearly, a lot of coaches could be thrown into the top "5 or 10" over the last 20 years as this thread asks. And clearly the top 2 are Jordan and Urbas. Two years ago there was a Yappi poll on this question (which is the ultimate decider in these questions), altho this was all time, not a 20-year span. The top 5 in that poll were the following:
1. Jeff Jordan - Graham 46%
2. Greg Urbas - SE 18%
3T. Harold Ferguson - SE 15%
3T. Mike Milkovich - Maple Heights 15%
5. Bill Barger - Walsh Jesuit 6%
Not to throw stones but every one of those coaches except one had outstanding kids coming from all over the landscape to wrestle for him. That one is Big Mike (like Jamie today). I am not very smart but with the talent that came into their rooms, and the terrific assistant coaches they have/had, even I would look like a stellar coach.
I am NOT trying to degrade the accomplishments of these coaches. They are all outstanding. However, to me the mark of a really outstanding coach is the ability to take what comes into your school "naturally" and make them into fine people as well as outstanding wrestlers.
The line my brother once used, and I like it a lot, is that a good coach can take his and beat yours or take yours and beat his.
BTW, it is Howard Ferguson, not Harold.
 
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