Josh Hutchens is in his seven season as AU's head wrestling coach - and recently presided over one of the best two-year stretches in program history.
In 2017-18, the Eagles placed fifth at the NCAA Division II Championships, and had, for the first time, two individual national champions in the same season - senior Luke Cramer (197) and sophomore Bret Romanzak (165).
The 2016-17 season saw a breakthrough in a couple of ways, as Hutchens led the Eagles to a sixth-place team finish at NCAA Division II nationals, and the program had its first national champion in 21 years in 133-pound senior Michael Labry.
Three Eagles went to Division II nationals, hosted by Ashland at Cleveland State, in 2018-19, and redshirt sophomore Tristen Weirich earned his first All-American citation at 285 pounds.
In 2015-16, the Eagles finished 14th in Division II and saw senior Joe Brandt earn a third-place finish at nationals at 197 pounds.
In 2014-15, Hutchens led the Eagles with a 16th-place national finish. Six AU wrestlers qualified for nationals, and two - Michael Labry for a third time and Brent Fickel for the first time - earned All-America honors. The Eagles were third at the NCAA Regional Championships, and placed 12th in the country in team grade-point average (3.2).
Hutchens enjoyed a number of highlights on and off the mat in 2013-14. The Eagles were fourth at the NCAA Regional Championships and sent six grapplers to nationals. Three of those wrestlers - Labry, Bryson Hall and Joe Brandt - earned All-America honors. The Eagles placed 14th at the NCAA Championships.
As a team, the Eagles also placed in the nation's Academic Top 20. AU ranked 14th in the country in team GPA (3.093).
Hutchens came to AU from Colorado School of Mines. He took over as the head coach of that program in 2009. This is the third head coaching post Hutchens has held. He was the head coach at James Madison from 2004-07. At that time, Hutchens was the youngest NCAA Division I head coach in the country.
Hutchens is the ninth head coach in program history. Before arriving at AU, he coached five NCAA national qualifiers and one All-American. He coached 17 National Wrestling Coaches of America Scholar-Athletes, and his teams placed in the top 15 of the NWCA All-Academic Team standings four times. One of his wrestlers received the NCAA Elite 88 Award, which is presented to the participating student-athlete at nationals with the highest grade point average.
In addition to his head coaching stints, Hutchens has served as an assistant coach at Colorado School of Mines (2007-09/2002-03) and James Madison (2003-04). Hutchens also spent one year (2001-02) as a volunteer assistant coach at his alma mater.
As a wrestler, Hutchens was an NCAA Division I national qualifier at Purdue. He finished third at the Big Ten championships. In high school, Hutchens was a two-time Indiana state wrestling champion. He was a 2009 inductee into the Indiana State High School Wrestling Coaches Association Hall of Fame.
Hutchens and his wife, Marianne, reside in Ashland with their children, Alyah and Beau.
Hutchens At Ashland