Sad news for Nebraska wrestling as long time assistant Coach Tony Ersland has accepted the head coaching position at Purdue. He leaves the Nebraska wrestling program after eight years under Mark Manning. He had previously been part of the Iowa State, Northwestern, and Northern Illinois coaching staffs.
Ersland competed for four years on extremely strong Iowa Hawkeye teams under wrestling legend Dan Gable.
In a prepared statement Purdue athletic director Morgan Burke said:
“He presented a comprehensive plan for moving our wrestling program forward both in the Big Ten and nationally…his résumé as a coach and as a student-athlete is impressive, and it is clear he knows the look and feel of a championship-caliber program.”
This rings true, especially at Nebraska, as Ersland helped coach many conference champions, All-Americans and National Champions. This includes Olympic gold medalist Jordan Burroughs. His resume also includes three-time All-American and one-time NCAA runner-up Craig Brester, a Howells, NE native.
Congrats to @tonyersland on his new position and journey. Best of luck, but we’ll be ready for you on Jan 9 when you return to Lincoln!
— Bryan Snyder (@Bryan__Snyder) May 23, 2014
This is sure to be a blow to Head Coach Mark Manning’s staff as Ersland’s experience and knowledge both on and off the mat will be hard to replace. Look for Manning to perform a nationwide search to replace Ersland as his team prepares for the 2014-2015 season.
Manning has strong ties to both NCAA and international competition which will greatly aid in his search.
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