Pitt wrestling promoted prestigious alum Jake Wentzel from volunteer assistant coach to assistant coach, the program announced on Tuesday.
A Pitt Great Always in Our Corner ✅
HIRED » Jake Wentzel » Assistant Coach
» 2021 NCAA Finalist
» Two-Time All-American
» Three-Time ACC Champion
» ACC Scholar Athlete of the Year
— Pitt Wrestling (@Pitt_WRES) August 8, 2023
The NCAA changed a rule allowing for volunteer assistant coaches to become full-time coaches, something that head coach Keith Gavin took full advantage of as he makes Wentzel his third assistant coach. Wentzel joins other assistant coaches Drew Headlee and Luke Pletcher on the Pitt wrestling coaching staff.
Wentzel wrestled for Pitt from 2016-22 and finished with a storied career. He won the ACC and qualified for the NCAA Championships from 2020-22 at 165 pounds. His best season came at the 2021 NCAA Championships, where he made it to the final match, but lost to No. 8 Shane Griffith of Stanford in a 6-2 decision.
He also excelled in the classroom, finishing on the All-ACC Academic Team four times and earned ACC Wrestling Scholar-Athlete of the Year honors in 2021. Wentzel also received NWCA Scholar All-American honors from 2020-22 and NWCA All-American honors in 2020.
With this new position, Wentzel will have the opportunity to recruit, expand his role within the program and improve as a coach going forward.
“I’m very thankful for this opportunity,” Wentzel said in a press release. “I’ve enjoyed training with the guys and being in their corner, and now I get to recruit, which will make my job a lot more fun. I know what it’s like to be a top local wrestler deciding where to go to college, so I can share my experience with guys in that position now and explain to them why Pitt is a place where you can be successful and win big.”