Chris ChionumaChionuma spent the previous three years at Army West Point, helping guide the Black Knights, who qualified 12 student-athletes to the NCAA Championships in that time. He also served as head coach at Ouachita Baptist University, an NCAA Division II school, which finished fifth at the NCAA Division II National Championships under his leadership.
Chionuma has been instrumental in the recent rise of Army West Point wrestling. Having assisted in signing back-to-back top-25 recruiting classes to the military institution, Chionuma is a meticulous recruiter with a keen eye on targeting student-athletes who can also handle the academic rigors. His recruiting experience will transition nicely to Cal Poly, where the average incoming GPA exceeds 4.0.
From a student-athlete development standpoint, Chionuma's primary focus will be on the mid to upper weights. His experience in developing the big guys is apparent as nine of the 12 NCAA Division I national qualifiers at Army West Point over the last three years were at weights 157 and above.
"Stylistically, he brings a different flavor to the table," said Sioredas. "He competed at Oklahoma State, one of the most storied programs in the history of our sport, under one of the most legendary coaches, John Smith. This excites me, my staff, and our team to have the opportunity to learn from Coach Chionuma.
"However, the most important draw to him is his character. He has an infectious personality and lights up the room when he walks in. He is passionate about coaching and aspires to become a head coach. These were all the things that we were looking for when we began to target candidates," Sioredas added. "I cannot be more excited. We have our guy!"
Chionuma enjoyed a successful collegiate wrestling career that included three separate NAIA All-America honors while wrestling at Lindenwood University from 2008-11. He also earned an individual national title at 174 pounds at Lindenwood in 2011.
Chionuma transferred to Oklahoma State following the 2010-11 season, eventually earning a Big XII championship at 184 pounds during the 2012-13 season. He compiled a 28-10 record with four falls and was a national qualifier on the Oklahoma State team that placed second at the 2013 NCAA Championships.
A graduate of Blue Springs High School in Blue Springs, Missouri, where he was a state champion during his senior season and placed third at state as a junior, Chionuma earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Education from Oklahoma State in 2012.
Chionuma replaces Todd Schavrien, who resigned recently after two seasons as Cal Poly's Head Assistant Coach to pursue other opportunities.
Chris Chionuma File
Assistant Coach at Army West Point
12 National Qualifiers at the NCAA Division I Championships
Head Coach at Ouachita Baptist (Arkadelphia, AR)
Team finished 5th at the NCAA Division II Championships
Graduate Assistant Coach at Ouachita Baptist
Team finished 4th at the NCAA Division II Championships
Big XII Champion and National Qualifier at Oklahoma State University
Team finished 2nd at the Division I NCAA Championships
NAIA National Champion at Lindenwood University
3X NAIA All-American
Blue Springs High School, Blue Springs, MO
2007 -- Third in state; 2008 State champion