Rocky Trudgeon, head wrestling coach at VMI, has been moved to an administrative position at the Institute and will not return as the head wrestling coach. His assistant, Chris Skretkowicz, has been named interim head coach for next season. I'm assuming its probably his job to lose. I wish Coach Trudgeon well, but the program as been in decline for the last decade. Prior to Coach Trudgeon's arrival Ike Sherlock had a 46-7 dual meet record in his last four seasons at the Institute. Coach Trudgeon never came close to that type dual meet performance, although to his credit he did have a couple AAs.
Yes, recruiting talent to a place like VMI can be challenging, but I look at the Citadel's recent success as an example of a similar program getting it right. I worry that VMI may be another university on the verge of dropping wrestling. I've seen little energy or support from the Institute leadership for the program as evidenced by the poor state of the wrestling facilities. The thunderdome was always a great place to wrestle and the cadets came out in force to support the squad. Its unfortunate that VMI didn't give them more to cheer about over the last few years.
We used to get plenty of Ohio and PA kids in the room as well. When I look at the roster now the percentage of VA kids is a lot higher. I'm guessing its a funding issue and an in-state recruit is a lot cheaper than an out of state recruit. Opening the doors to Co-ed education and the impact of Title IX was probably a huge detriment as well, although like I said the Citadel is finding a way to be successful (although their record of success is relatively short).
I'd like to see VMI put a hard press on Robie at VT or Weber at Christiansburg, but I don't think either would be interested. Bruce Shumaker at the Apprentice School would also be a great choice and was there in the early 80s as an assistant. Maybe a current VA AAA HS coach like Martin at Western Branch.
Vais any ideas on a new head coach?