Ryan Millhof after a win at the 2019 Pac-12 Championships (Photo/Tony Rotundo, WrestlersAreWarriors.com)
The saying is ... you can never go home again. That said, it appears that NCAA All-American wrestler Ryan Millhof has found his way home to become a head wrestling coach ... at his high school alma, Collins Hill High School, just outside Atlanta.
Millhof, set to turn 25 this August, is the youngest head wrestling coach ever in Gwinnett County ... and the first coach to have earned NCAA Division I All-American mat honors, at his first college home, at Oklahoma University when he placed seventh in the 125-pound bracket at the 2016 NCAAs. Millhof later transferred to Arizona State, where he qualified for the 2018 NCAAs, and was finalist at the 2018 Pac-12 conference championships.
Before heading west for college, Millhof made a name for himself in wrestling at prep powerhouse Collins Hill High. He was a four-time Georgia state championships finalist, winning three state titles, and compiling an overall record of 119-4.
When asked about his new head coaching job, Millhof told Gwinnett Prep Sports, "I'm excited. I know it's going to be an enormous challenge. Obviously with my age, that's what everyone will look at first. But I've been wrestling for 18, 19 years now. I feel like I have a good grasp on wrestling. I'm just here to do my best."
"I know it's a lot of responsibility and I think it's got a lot of potential," Millhof said. "I think I'll be able to relate to the guys well and with the struggles you go through being a high school kid because, frankly, I was a high school kid not long ago."
Millhoff takes the helm of a Collins Hill wrestling program with a successful legacy over the years ... having tallied 12 Georgia state titles, the last taking place in 2012. However, the young head coach is optimistic that his credentials will help guide his new team to a return to past glories.
"I think if I just have the same mentality I've had my whole life it will transition well into coaching," Millhof said. "Just working hard, living the right lifestyle and holding yourself to the highest expectations. I'm going to hold myself to high expectations and hold everybody else to high expectations. This community, this school has got the potential to do that. That's the exciting part."