Leading the return of NCAA Division I men’s wrestling, Morgan State University on Monday announced it has hired Kenny Monday as its next wrestling coach.
Monday, the first Black wrestler in history to win an Olympic gold medal, is a National Wrestling Hall of Fame inductee, three-time Olympian and former NCAA All-American standout, who brings a championship-level coaching pedigree and an expansive yet impressive resume to a Bears’ wrestling program looking to restart after a 25-year hiatus.
Monday comes to Morgan after serving as the director of wrestling and head wrestling coach at Spire Academy, since 2021.
“I’m extremely grateful and honored to be named as the head wrestling coach at Morgan State University. Bringing the wrestling program back to an HBCU after 25 years is exciting for me and the entire wrestling community,” said Monday. ” Every experience in my career has prepared me for this moment, and I can’t wait to get started.”
As an athlete, his accolades include Olympic gold medalist (1988) and silver medalist (1992), World Champion (1989), USA Free Style Champion (1985, 1988, 1991 and 1996) and three-time All-American and NCAA Champion (1984). He has been inducted into the National Wrestling (2001), Oklahoma Sports (2003) and United World Wrestling International (2016) Halls of Fame.
To date, Morgan remains the only HBCU to offer NCAA Division I Varsity-level wrestling. The first full season of Morgan’s new wrestling program is slated for 2023–24.
“With the hiring of Coach Monday and the vast, winning experience he brings from competing at the highest echelons, we are certain to return to our championship glory and become a destination for student-athletes desiring top-level coaching and exceptional academic programs,” said David K. Wilson, president of Morgan State University. “It isn’t every day that you can bring in a leader the caliber of Coach Kenny Monday…someone who has successfully competed and coached at the high school, collegiate and professional levels and has won throughout his career.”
In 2021, the university announced plans to revive the men’s wrestling program with the support of a $2.7 million gift from HBCU Wrestling, a new initiative reestablishing wrestling programs on HBCU campuses.
“I am incredibly proud of how we were able to work together with Morgan State to secure such an incredible leader for the program,” said Kerry McCoy, president of HBCU Wrestling. “Kenny Monday is an icon in the world of wrestling and has inspired so many. He has the ability to mobilize the Morgan alumni and the local community to generate support for the program. We look forward to continuing to support him and the program in any way we can.”
Courtesy: Morgan State Athletics
Leave a Reply