MINNEAPOLIS – The University of Minnesota will honor head wrestling coach J Robinson’s 25 years of service on Sunday, Feb. 20 when the No. 4 Gophers host No. 2 Iowa at Williams Arena. The long-time Gophers coach has brought Minnesota’s wrestling program to new heights since taking over the program in 1986 while the J Robinson name has become synonymous with amateur wrestling.
Robinson, a two-time National Coach of the Year, has guided the program to three national championships including the school’s first-ever NCAA title in 2001. Minnesota rewrote the record book that year, becoming the first team in NCAA championships history to record 10 All-Americans and the first team to capture the team title without placing a competitor in the final round. Minnesota would repeat as national champions in 2002 and add a third title in 2007.
Robinson has also coached 12 individual NCAA champions while 46 of his wrestlers have amassed a total of 97 All-America honors including the only six Gophers to earn All-American honors in each of their four years of eligibility.
A native of San Diego, Calif., Robinson has been labeled the “Dean of Big Ten Wrestling,” earning six conference championships and coaching 42 Gophers to individual Big Ten titles. Robinson has been named the conference’s Coach of the Year a record seven times.
The university will honor Robinson throughout the Minnesota/Iowa dual — one of the most anticipated events of the year in college wrestling – including a 25th anniversary celebration preceding the dual and a commemorative poster and t-shirt giveaway for fans.
No. 4 Minnesota returns to action this weekend at No. 14 Michigan on Friday night before taking on No. 3 Penn State on Sunday at 2 p.m. at the Sports Pavilion. The Gophers then close out the regular season against Iowa a week later at 2 p.m. at Williams Arena.