Frank Romano is retiring as Notre Dame's wrestling coach
SOUTH EUCLID, Ohio -- Director of Athletics Scott Swain announced on Tuesday that National Wrestling Hall of Fame member Frank Romano is retiring as the head coach of the Notre Dame College wrestling program.
Notre Dame has seen tremendous success in Romano's time at the helm of the program, leading the Falcons for 13 seasons. After taking over as the first head coach of the new program in 2006, Romano has coached the team to nine national team titles, including four while a part of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), four in NCAA Division II and one National Collegiate Wrestling Association (NCWA) Club National Championship.
In 2019, Notre Dame took fourth place at the National Tournament. Jose Rodriguez was crowned the National Champion at 141 lbs. and five wrestlers were named All-American.
"You always want to go out on top, and I feel like we had a really good season," Romano said. "A great season is when you win a National Title, but this year, we were the runner-up at the National Dual meet and then won every other dual meet. We won the Regional Tournament and we finished fourth in the nation, with five All-Americans. You want to go on top and you want to go out on your own terms, that's really important."
The Falcons have won nine Regional Tournaments in NAIA and NCAA, while taking home the biggest trophy in six of the seven regional tournaments following the move to NCAA-II.
For the Falcons, 66 wrestlers were named All-American and 22 were crowned as an individual National Champion.
Joey Davis, who went undefeated in four years of NCAA-II competition at Notre Dame College, will graduate in May. He won four National Championships in three different weight classes.
Since moving to NCAA-II in 2012, the Falcons have produced 12 individual National Champions and 41 All-Americans. At the National Championship, the team finished top-four in six of the last seven seasons. They won the Division II National Dual Meet Title, twice.
"What Frank Romano built from the ground up is truly remarkable," Swain said. "His record of wins and championships is a testament of his hard work and effort. I will miss working with Frank and the passion he brought to Falcon wrestling a great deal."
The program won 18 national level events, which includes Regionals, National Tournaments and National Duals. In dual meets under Romano, the team had 123 wins.
According to Romano, he has been coaching for nearly 50 years at the high school and collegiate level and never had a losing record in a season.
"I've been doing this my whole life," Romano mentioned. "It's a major life change and you have to get used to what's going to happen next. It went by fast, and to have a run like that is pretty unique."
"We had a great run and I feel good about the situation and I wish everyone the best of luck."