Kyle Shoop at the 2019 NCAA Championships(Photo/Tony Rotundo; WrestlersAreWarriors.com)
On Monday, August 23rd, 2021, The University at Buffalo named Kyle Shoop as their Assistant Head Coach via Twitter (@UB_Wrestling). As a standout wrestler for Lock Haven University (2015-2020), Coach Shoop is excited for the opportunity to coach at a Division I Wrestling Program, similarly in the MAC Conference.
Coach Shoop was born and raised in South Central, Pennsylvania, where he was a 3x state place winner for Boiling Springs High School; 3rd, 2nd, and 3rd - respectively. He then went on to wrestle for Lock Haven University. As an Eagle, he compiled an overall record of 130-46. Of those wins, 22 of them were in his final season. In 2019, Coach Shoop placed 7th at the NCAA Division 1 Wrestling Championships.
In a recent interview with Coach Kyle Shoop, he details his process of being hired, as well as his plans for this upcoming wrestling season as a Bull.
When did you first hear that The University at Buffalo was looking to hire a new Assistant Head Coach?
"I first heard of the Assistant Head Coach position when Head Coach John Stutzman reached out to me in early August 2021. He asked me to come down and visit the campus. After a weekend of touring the campus, fishing, and getting to know Coach Stutzman, I was sold. I knew where I was at, and where I wanted to be. I knew that I would have an opportunity to do big things at The University at Buffalo."
How long did the hiring process take, and what did the onboarding process look like?
"The hiring process was pretty quick once I officially determined that I wanted the job. Within roughly two weeks, I filled out all of the paperwork required by The University at Buffalo. I put in my two weeks at my other place of employment, The Cage Training Center, located in Mechanicsburg, PA. Bob Bender, the owner of the club, was extremely understanding and allowed me to be a Guest Clinician until I officially started at UB. He has been a great example in my life, and I will always be thankful for the opportunity to work at The Cage Training Center."
How long have you known John Stutzman, and what was your connection to him prior to officially being named the Assistant Head Coach?
"Prior to being named the Assistant Head Coach and the initial contact of potential employment, there was no real connection. The only time that I had ever been around Coach Stutzman was when he was in the corner against me while I was wrestling for Lock Haven University. Once I visited the campus and started to get to know him, I really liked him as a person, and what his plans were for the UB Wrestling Program."
What are you most excited about this upcoming season as a Bull?
"I'm very excited to see what our guys can do. We have a great mix of guys in our wrestling room, older and younger, all looking to achieve the ultimate goal of becoming a national champion. I'm also looking forward to building up the wrestling program in general. My plan is not just a one- or two-year deal; it's built for longevity. Coach Stutzman, Coach Ramos and I want to build a Top 10 program, and we know that we can achieve it. Right now, I'm working with student-athletes who are different from where I've come from, and it's teaching me a lot. They work hard. Ultimately, I want them to believe in themselves, and I want them to take out names every time they step on the mat."
What makes The University at Buffalo different from any other school?
"The environment here at The University at Buffalo, and the community of Buffalo is great. We have great wrestlers. We have great staff. And not to mention, the academic part of our wrestlers' college experience is unlike any other university in the nation. The education our wrestlers leave with is exceptional, and second to none. We have wrestlers from all around the country who are looking to come here because they not only have an opportunity to wrestle for a Division I Wrestling Program, but they leave with an unmatched academic experience."
With Coach John Stutzman being a high-caliber coach, will you/have you been given an opportunity to show off your specific knowledge of wrestling?
"Yes, absolutely! I'm complimenting the system that is already in place and slowly adding to it throughout the season. During practice, I have the opportunity to share my knowledge of top and bottom. I'm excited to show our guys new and creative positions as the season as it progresses."
Is there anything else that you want wrestling fans to know about you, or The University at Buffalo's wrestling program?
"I want wrestling fans to know that I am very excited for this upcoming season. This is what I've always dreamed of doing, and I am especially grateful to Coach Stutzman and The University at Buffalo for this opportunity. After becoming a Division I athlete myself, I knew that wrestling would always be a huge part of my life, even beyond my years at Lock Haven University. I want my wrestlers to know that being a wrestler is not only an "on the mat" thing, but also living every part of your life in the best way possible, in the classroom, community, etc. As a staff, we want our wrestlers to develop the skills to succeed in life. Lastly, we're working with our athletes to help support everyone around campus. The University at Buffalo's wrestling program is working every day to create a network of connections, and outreaching to support those in and around campus."
If you'd like to hear more about The University at Buffalo's Assistant Head Coach, Kyle Shoop, you can visit Rokfin, where he details his story of success.