Greg Strobel named USA Wrestling Man of the Year

By Gary Abbott | Aug. 19, 2010, 11:21 a.m. (ET)
Greg Strobel of Bethlehem, Pa., who has served wrestling as a volunteer leader, coach and administrator for decades, has been named Man of the Year by USA Wrestling, the national governing body for wrestling in the United States. This award recognizes an outstanding man for his contributions to the sport of wrestling.

"My first thought when I heard about this was that it is a cool deal. I've seen the list of previous winners, and that is very good company. All of those people dedicated their lives to improve wrestling. To join those people with this award is a great honor" said Strobel.

Strobel serves as First Vice President of USA Wrestling, and is a member of the Executive Committee. He has been a member of the USA Wrestling Board of Directors for almost 20 years.

He is the chairperson of the Freestyle Sports Committee, which oversees the national freestyle program. He is also the chairperson of the Sports Science Committee and the Freestyle Coach Selection Committee. Strobel also serves as a member of the Greco-Roman Sport Committee and the Women's Sport Committee.

Strobel chairs an ad-hoc committee that is making recommendations concerning the restructuring of USA Wrestling's Board of Directors and Committee structure. He has also served for over a decade as the chairperson of the ad-hoc Title IX Committee. He has also served on many other USA Wrestling Committees in the past.

For many years, Strobel was one of the most successful freestyle wrestling coaches within USA Wrestling. He served as a co-coach for the 2000 U.S. Olympic freestyle team, which featured gold medalist Brandon Slay and four medalists in Sydney, Australia.

Strobel served as the assistant coach of the 1996 U.S. Olympic team, which claimed five medals, including three individual champions. He was also a coach of the 1999 U.S. Freestyle World Team, which placed second in the team standings and featured three medalists, including World champion Stephen Neal.

He was the head coach of the 1994 U.S. Goodwill Games team, which featured two individual gold medalists. He was a co-coach of the 1997 U.S. World Cup team that won the team title and made history by winning every bout in the gold-medal match against Russia. He was assistant coach of the 1995 U.S. World team, which claimed the World team title and featured four champions. Strobel also served as head coach for the 1997 U.S. Junior World team.

He was named the 1997 USA Wrestling's Freestyle Coach of the Year and 1999 Developmental Coach of the Year. He is the first to receive both Developmental and Senior coach of the year honors.

In 13 seasons as head coach at Lehigh University, Strobel had 189-83-1 dual meet record and led Lehigh to six EIWA championships including five consecutive titles from 2002-06. Strobel was named EIWA Coach of the Year four times, and was named National Coach of the Year by the NWCA after leading Lehigh to a third place finish at the 2004 NCAA Championships. His wrestlers captured 28 individual EIWA titles and totaled 30 All-America medals. Strobel coached two national champions, Rob Rohn in 2002 and Troy Letters in 2004.

Previously, he was head coach for the Team Foxcatcher club program in the 1990's, when the team produced numerous U.S. World Team members and national champion athletes on the Senior level. Strobel is proud that one year that Foxcatcher had six of the 10 U.S. freestyle national champions.

Strobel served as National Teams Director for USA Wrestling from 1983-91, directing the programs for the elite athletes and international teams for the United States. He was responsible for overseeing the activities of the National Coaches and the volunteer coaching staffs. As Nationals Teams Director, Strobel helped in the preparation of all U.S. World and Olympic teams. While he was in this position, USA Wrestling created its landmark National Team program in 1989, which provided financial support for the nation's top international athletes.

While a USA Wrestling employee, Strobel served as the Team Leader for the 1988 U.S. Olympic Greco-Roman Team. He also served as the USA Wrestling's National Freestyle Coach prior to the 1988 Olympic Games.

Strobel also served as an assistant coach at his alma mater Oregon State Univ. He won two NCAA titles for Oregon State and was named the Outstanding Wrestler at the 1973 NCAA Tournament. He was a national runner-up in freestyle, and placed four times at the national meet. Strobel originally hails from Scapoose, Ore.

He is currently an administrator for the Lehigh University athletic department, serving as the Assistant Athletic Director for External Relations. He is the past president of the Eastern Collegiate Wrestling Association (EIWA) and a previous member of the NCAA Rules Committee.

In 2009, a book about his life was published entitled STROBEL: Stories from a life with wrestling, written by Jamie Moffatt.

Strobel will be recognized by his peers during the USA Wrestling Board of Directors meeting on August 20.

"I am honored that USA Wrestling is presenting this award to me. The timing is perfect, with it being recognized at our Board meeting, which we hope will be a landmark meeting as we discuss Board restructuring. To be named Man of the Year and to work on that project at the same time is very special for me" said Strobel.

2009 - Greg Strobel
2008 - Sonny Greenhalgh
2007 - Van Stokes
2006 - Steve Silver
2005 - Al Bevilacqua
2004 - Jeff Levitetz
2003 - Set Agonian
2002 - Al Kastl
2001 - James Ravannack
2000 - Rulon Gardner
1999 - Duane Morgan
1998 - Scott Beck
1997 - Rick Tucci
1996 - Dave Schultz
1995 - Leroy Evans
1994 - James E. Scherr
1993 - Arthur J. Martori
1992 - Bruce Baumgartner
1990 - Eugene Barone
1989 - John Vaughan
1987 - Dave Rudrud
1986 - Jeff Blatnick
1985 - Dr. Dan Gould
1984 - Gary Thompson
1983 - Don Sondgeroth
1982 - Frank Rader
1981 - John Roberts
1980 - Rick Bay
1979 - Ben Bennett
1978 - Werner Holzer
1977 - Vince Zuaro
1976 - Ken Kraft
1974-75 - Russ Hellickson
1973 - Jack Stanbro
1972 - Melvin Jones
1971 - Bud Linholm
1970 - Rex Peery