NEW YORK -- Nestor Taffur begins his tenure as a volunteer assistant coach for the Columbia wrestling program, announced by the Andrew F. Barth Head Coach of Wrestling Zach Tanelli.
"More than Nestor's extensive wrestling background and accolades, it's his temperament and style of communication that make him so inspiring as a coach," said Tanelli. "He adds tremendous value to the program and is an ideal addition to the Columbia wrestling family and the culture we are continuing to build here."
A former standout on the mats at Boston University, Taffur has also impressed in his post-collegiate career.
In the 74-kilogram (163 pounds) weight class, Taffur was a member of the 2017 and 2018 World Team while wrestling for his native Colombia. He won three consecutive national titles in his home country from 2016-18, and in 2018 earned bronze medals at the Pan Am Championships, the Central American Games, and the Cerro Pelado competition. Taffur was a silver medalist during the 2017 Pan Am Games, and also picked up All-American honors during the 2015 U.S. Open.
During his collegiate career, Taffur twice qualified for the NCAA Championships. The 157-pounder earned an EIWA Title in 2014, a CAA Championship in 2013, and graduated from BU as the program's winningest wrestler with 119 victories. In his senior season, Taffur went 37-4 and was ranked as high as No. 4 at 157.
"I am excited to join to the wrestling program at Columbia University, an opportunity to work with unique student athletes that are competing at the highest level of collegiate wrestling while balancing the rigor of Ivy League academics," said Taffur. "Zach and the staff are a passionate group of leaders that have put the tools in place for these student athletes to succeed and I'm honored to join them as they continue to build."
In the coaching arena, Taffur helped out Franklin & Marshall as an assistant coach during the 2014-15 season. He also serves as a resident athlete with the New York City Regional Training Center (NYC RTC) as he trains for the 2020 Olympics in in Tokyo, Japan.