The past decade of Penn State wrestling has been an incredible one.
In April 2009, Cael Sanderson became head wrestling coach of the Nittany Lions ... and it was a complete reversal of fortune for the program that had just completed its first century. In his first decade at the helm (2009-2018), Sanderson led Penn State wrestling to seven NCAA team titles, 20 NCAA individual champions, 51 NCAA All-American honorees, and four Hodge Trophy winners.
By multiple measures, the Nittany Lions have become the dominant Division I wrestling program of the past decade ... to the point where the word "dynasty" has been used well beyond Happy Valley to describe Penn State wrestling.
Another way to commemorate that success: put it in a book.
That's just what the Penn State Wrestling Club did, with its brand-new book, Dawn of a New Era: Penn State Wrestling 2009-2018.
A sequel to a story one hundred years in the making
Dawn of a New Era is the sequel -- and supplement -- to the first Penn State wrestling book, A Century of Penn State Wrestling to commemorate the first 100 years of the collegiate mat program located in the heart of Pennsylvania. Both are the products of the Penn State Wrestling Club.
"When we wrote the Century book, it was meant to commemorate the historic milestone of 100 years as a Penn State sport," according to Connie Christiansen, the chair of the Penn State Wrestling Club's Historian Committee.
"As the Sanderson era started to unfold, we thought it would be appropriate to write a supplement to the original. We never envisioned that the team would accumulate more team and individual championships in a decade than it had in the first 100 years of the program."
"The purpose of this ten-year account was recognition of the work and effort that makes Penn State wrestling so special," Christiansen continued. "The 2008-09 Penn State wrestling year began the second century of wrestling."
Dawn of a New Era: Penn State Wrestling 2009-2018 picks up where A Century of Penn State Wrestling book concludes ... but with a bit different format. The new book provides a chapter for each year in the decade, starting with the 2008-09 season, and concluding with the 2017-18 season. Each of these chapters includes an overview of the total team success that year, along with individual wrestler records and accomplishments. Interspersed between these "year in review" chapters are what Dawn of a New Era refers to as "special interest chapters" which address specific, overarching topics of significance to the program, such as a profile of Jeff Byers (the voice of Penn State wrestling), rule changes over the years, and the success of collegiate and alumni wrestlers competing on U.S. freestyle and Greco-Roman teams.
A winning book for college wrestling's top program
Dawn of a New Era: Penn State Wrestling 2009-2018 shares many of the attributes that made A Century of Penn State Wrestling such a success. Like its predecessor, Dawn of a New Era has tons of incredible photos that bring mat action and images of Nittany Lion mat stars to readers everywhere. What's more, the new book's text is well-written, providing a clear presentation of each season's highlights -- along with the special interest chapters -- in a way that makes for compelling reading.
Or, in the words of Allen Smith, president of the Penn State Wrestling Club, "We feel that anyone who is a fan of Penn State wrestling, or college wrestling in general, would enjoy reading the information we have collected and written."
How to add this new book to your library
NCAA regulations prohibit direct sale of Dawn of a New Era: Penn State Wrestling 2009-2018. However, copies of this new 140-page book are complimentary with a donation of at least $50 to the Penn State Wrestling Club to help defray design, printing, publication and shipping expenses.
Donations may be made via PayPal from the online store at the Penn State Wrestling Club website.
Note: If donating from the PSWC website, you must first make your donation from the online store, then provide your shipping address by using the feedback window selected from the main menu. In that feedback window, please record the amount of your donation ... along with the shipping address where you want Dawn of a New Era to be sent.
Another option: print out an order form and mail it -- along with your donation by check, made payable to "PSWC/Dawn of a New Era" -- to the address on the order form.
If you'd like to purchase a copy of the original book A Century of Penn State Wrestling: A Century of Success (1909-2008), visit the Penn State Wrestling Club's online store and follow the same procedure outlined above. A Century of Penn State Wrestling is available for purchase for $28.