South Dakota State University head wrestling coach Chris Bono announced Tuesday the addition of A.J. Schopp to the Jackrabbit coaching staff.
“I am thrilled to have A.J. join our program,” Bono said. “He brings a tireless work ethic and extensive knowledge of the sport, and is one of the most respected young coaches in the country. He is a perfect fit for not only our athletic program, but for the community, as well. He shares the same mindset and philosophy as Coach (Jon) Reader and myself. A.J. will have an immediate impact on our team — I cannot wait for him to get started.”
Schopp recently completed a standout wrestling career at Edinboro University (Pa.), where he was a four-time NCAA qualifier and three-time All-American. He finished fourth at the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships as both a sophomore and junior before placing third in the 133-pound division this past March. He compiled a 133-17 career record with 67 pins, including a 26-3 mark with 16 falls as a senior.
As a team, Edinboro posted a pair of top-five finishes in the team standings at the Division I Championships, including a third-place showing in 2015.
“I am excited to have the opportunity to coach at SDSU,” Schopp said. “The atmosphere created by the coaches, athletic administration, the student-athletes and the community is unbelievably warm and welcoming. I can’t wait to be a part of the Jackrabbit family — we are going to do some great things.”
Schopp will begin his duties in June.
South Dakota State finished the 2014-15 season with an 11-8 record in duals, including a 3-2 mark in the Western Wrestling Conference. The Jackrabbits later placed third at the NCAA West Regional and sent three wrestlers to the NCAA Division I Wrestling Championships.