Learning Lessons On The Wrestling Mat

On the Spot Q&A with Men’s Wrestling Head Coach Tony Valek

Once Tony Valek ’12, ’14 MAL became part of the Augsburg University community, he never left. From student wrestler to head wrestling coach, he remains invested in training the next generation of Auggies—helping them not only grow as athletes, but as human beings ready for life after graduation. Amateur wrestling website The Open Mat named Valek the 2022–23 NCAA Division III Coach of the Year for leading the men’s wrestling team to its 14th national championship in program history. Following last season’s tremendous success, Valek reflects on his Augsburg journey and what he loves most about coaching.

Q: How did you end up at Augsburg?

A: I’ve been involved in the Augsburg community for quite a while. My older brother, Ryan Valek ’06, actually attended and wrestled at Augsburg. The relationships with the coaches—like Coach [Jeff] Swenson—and the people ended up drawing me here. I wrestled at Augsburg from 2008 to 2012, and I really haven’t left. I was the graduate assistant coach for two years, and then I became a full-time coach in the 2014–15 season and have been here ever since. Continue reading at augsburg.edu →