Lock Haven's Scott Moore was named EWL Coach of the Year (Photo/Tim Barnhart)
Just prior to the NCAAs, Kerry McCoy announced that he was resigning as head wrestling coach at the University of Maryland. The opening is an interesting one. On one hand, Maryland is a Big Ten program, close to fertile recruiting grounds and not that far removed from success. On the other hand, the program will lose a lot of talent in addition to their coach. All-American heavyweight Youssif Hemida graduates as well as former ranked recruits Alfred "Baby J" Bannister, Ryan Diehl and Josh Ugalde. Whoever ends up with the head job will certainly have plenty of opportunities, but it will have to be a nearly complete rebuild. The following are some realistic candidates who might get a chance to start the turnaround.
On a recent episode of FloWrestling Radio Live, host Christian Pyles indicated that Moore is currently the front runner for the gig. However, at this point nothing has been finalized. Moore's recent run of success as the head coach of Lock Haven would make him a strong candidate for the Maryland coaching spot. The Bald Eagles are coming off back-to-back top-20 finishes. Two seasons ago Ronnie Perry made the national finals and this past season Chance Marsteller finished third in the deep 165-pound weight class.
Despite coaching a mid-major program, Moore has shown the ability to recruit top talent. His 2016 recruiting class was ranked 14th by InterMat ahead of major conference teams such as Wisconsin, Illinois and Oklahoma State.
Beckerman spent his high school days at Dematha Catholic High School, which is only a seven-minute drive from College Park. After becoming a two-time All-American at Nebraska and a coaching stint at Navy, Beckerman took an assistant job with the Terps. During his eight years at Maryland, he served under both McCoy and Pat Santoro. In his time there, the squad had 16 different conference champions and seven All-Americans.
In 2014, Beckerman left Maryland and took the head coaching position at Brown. In his first season with the team, he coached Ophir Bernstein to Brown's first All-American finish in 16 years. His 2017 recruiting class was ranked 19th by InterMat and included three top-100 recruits.
In between stints as a college assistant, Kolat ran a very successful private wrestling club in Maryland. He had a very positive impact on the level of competition in the state, and he continues to do well there in recruiting.
Despite his ties to the area, it would like likely be hard to pry him away from his spot at Campbell. The former Olympian has been leading the Camels since 2014, and the team has won two SoCon championships in the last three seasons.
Donny Pritzlaff has helped Rutgers rise to national prominence (Photo/Tony Rotundo, WrestlersAreWarriors.com)
Pritzlaff may not have a direct connection to Maryland, but he has assisted in the rise of the Rutgers program who recently picked up their first two national champions in Nick Suriano and Anthony Ashnault. Judging by the recent success of wrestlers coming out of New Jersey high schools, someone with Pritzlaff's connections could take advantage of an underappreciated the recruiting ground and make waves at a school like Maryland. Prior to coming to Rutgers, Pritzlaff previously served as an assistant at Wisconsin and Michigan, so he is no stranger to the Big Ten.
It seems unlikely that Maryland will stick with someone from the old regime considering their recent lack of success. However, some assistants have been able to make improvements after being given a chance. For example, Roger Chandler has made steady strides at Michigan State after taking over for Tom Minkel.
Sheptock has been on staff at Maryland since 2016, and he was named interim head coach after McCoy stepped down. He was a three-time ACC champion and two-time All-American at Maryland. He then moved into coaching where he made a stop at Drexel before returning to the Terps in 2016. In his first season, he helped lead four wrestlers to the national tournament.