CLEVELAND, Ga. -- The Truett McConnell University athletic department has announced Patrick James as the new Head Coach of the TMU wrestling program, effective immediately. James has served as the interim head coach since August of 2019.
"We are very excited to have Patrick on board," Athletic Director Jenni Shepard said. "He is very passionate about the sport of wrestling, his love for Christ is evident and he will pour everything that he can into his wrestlers."
James, a South Carolina native, helped lead the Bears as an assistant coach to their first ever Appalachian Athletic Conference Tournament Runner-up finish in February of 2019. Four Bears made it to the final championship round placing second in their perspective weight classes, while three more recorded third-place podium finishes.
"I couldn't be more excited to have the opportunity to continue coaching at Truett McConnell University," James said. "This place is special because its foundation in all areas is based upon God's Word. I look forward to building a wrestling program with a culture of excellence, integrity and Christ-like character with the purpose of bringing glory to our Heavenly Father."
James himself was an individual high school State-Champion and was named South Carolina Class 3A Wrestling of the Year in 2014. In addition, the National Wrestling Hall of Fame awarded James with the Dave Schultz High School of Excellence Award for the state of South Carolina in 2014.
James is a University of South Carolina Aiken graduate with a degree in Business Administration. James and his wife, Anna, and two kids, Bonnie (2 years) and Isaiah (4 months), currently reside in Westminster, South Carolina.
Catch James and the Bears in action on the road at Spartanburg Methodist College (Jan. 24, 6:00 p.m.), Reinhardt University (Feb. 2, 2:00 p.m.), and Allen University (Feb. 8, 1:00 p.m.). TMU is set to compete at the AAC Qualifier on Feb. 22, at West Virginia Tech.