Kansas Wesleyan University has selected Jason Schweer as its next wrestling coach as announced by Vice President and Director of Athletics Mike Hermann. Schweer comes to Kansas Wesleyan after serving as an assistant coach at University of the Ozarks in Clarksville, Ark.
“As an assistant coach, Jason has learned what it takes to build a young wrestling program. He’s done it twice. His alma mater, Grand View, where he spent two seasons as an assistant coach after his collegiate career ended, has become the NAIA standard bearer,” Hermann said. “Ozarks has improved in each of his three seasons there, sending multiple wrestlers to the NCAA Division III national championship last year. I’m confident those experiences will serve him well as builds on the foundation of the Kansas Wrestling program as we enter our third year at the varsity level.”
“I want to thank President Dr. Matt Thompson and Athletic Director Mike Hermann for believing in me and giving me a chance to become a head coach. There’s also a boat load of people I need to thank that have been a part of my journey up until this point,” Schweer said. “I want to say thank you to all of my coaches through the years that have been role models: Rick Caldwell, Mark Schwab, Nick Mitchell, Paul Reedy, Grant Turner and especially Coach Jimmy May for getting this program started in the first place and convincing me that I am the right man for the job. A special thank you to my coaching colleagues at the University of the Ozarks — Jason Zastrow and LeRoy Gardner — they’ve played tremendous roles in developing me as a coach and preparing me for this tremendous opportunity. Lastly, I need to send a special thank you to my mother, Danise Schweer; without her, none of this would be possible.”
Schweer comes to Kansas Wesleyan after spending the last three seasons as an assistant coach at University of the Ozarks, where he helped develop a new program into a competitive program at the NCAA Division III level. While at Ozarks, he helped the Eagles post their first-ever winning season in 2016-17 while also earning the program’s first-ever individual win at a NCAA Regional that year. The Eagles placed fourth in the 2017 Southeast Conference Tournament and had nine Top-7 finishers at the event.
“Kansas Wesleyan is a close-knit community, and that was evident the second I stepped on campus. From the top down, I am confident I will have the support and structure to help the program grow and flourish. Outside of the on-campus support, the community of Salina has a rich wrestling history and many supportive community members that are hungry to be involved in the growth of the Coyote Wrestling family,” Schweer added. “I am fired up to take the reins of this program in this community. This is a great environment for a young program to grow and develop, and to be a part of getting this program off the ground is an amazing opportunity. We have all the tools we need to be very successful here, now it’s time to get work.”
Schweer is ready to become a part of what is already a strong group in the Salina wrestling community, something that he is really looking forward to.
“I’m fired up to get involved with the Salina wrestling community,” he said. “This sport has taught me and given me so much, I can’t wait to give back to it, especially within this community. The more we can work together, the better it will be for all of those involved. I’ve already gotten a short list of folks to reach out to, and I’m excited to get some folks together, sit down, and figure out how we can all work together to advance not just the KWU wrestling program, but also the sport of wrestling here in Salina and across the area.”
In 2018, he helped the Eagles post a 3-1 record at home and saw the team win the Richland College Southwest Scuffle. Schweer also helped the Eagles improve four spots at the NCAA Regional from the previous year and saw the program yield its first-ever NCAA Division III National Qualifiers. Also in 2018, the program had two NWCA All-Academic Team honorees.
Schweer also says that while his team will be young to start, expect the brand of wrestling to be exciting to watch and for the student-athletes to be focused both on the mat and in the classroom.
“We’re young and pretty green, and we’ll be on the lower end numbers-wise. We will take some lumps here early on, and we’ll be better because of it. We’re going to be tough. Tough times make tough people. We’re going to do the work, and that’s not just on the mat. I have high expectations for my guys to work their tails off in the classroom,” he said. “If they can take care of school and be the best representations of themselves in their personal lives and as community members, we’ll have all the time in the world to get better at wrestling. That’s the fun stuff. I believe in preparing my athletes to live life fully; we’ll be well-rounded individuals. Wrestling won’t last forever, but the lessons learned through our great sport are what will leave a lasting impact on each and every person that commits to being a part of the KWU Wrestling Family.”
Prior to Ozarks, Schweer served as an assistant coach for two seasons at Grand View University. While at Grand View, the Vikings won two NAIA National Championships, part of their current run of seven-straight titles, had 24 National Qualifiers, 20 NAIA All-Americans and six NAIA National Champions.
Schweer graduated from Grand View University with a degree in sports management in 2012. He was part of Grand View’s 2012 NAIA National Championship team and was a Daktronics-NAIA Scholar-Athlete during that time. Before Grand View, he was a two-time NJCAA Academic All-American Award recipient at North Iowa Area Community College and helped the Trojans to a fourth place finish at the 2008 NJCAA National Championships and a second place finish at the 2009 NJCAA National Duals.