Augsburg alums LeVesseur, Lewandowski to be named to NWCA D-III Hall of Fame

MINNEAPOLIS — Augsburg University men’s wrestling alumni Marcus LeVesseur ’07 and Nik Lewandowski ’01, key members of one of the most successful eras of Auggie wrestling history, will be inducted into the National Wrestling Coaches Association Division III Hall of Fame during a ceremony in July in Ponte Verde Beach, Fla., it was announced on Monday. The induction ceremony will take place on July 30 at the Sawgrass Marriott Golf Resort and Spa during the NWCA’s annual convention.

Both four-time All-Americans, LeVesseur won four NCAA Division III national championships (2003, 2004, 2005, 2007) and went a perfect 155-0 in his career, while Lewandowski won a national title in 2001 while finishing second twice (1998, 1999) and third once (2000), going 124-34 in his career.

LeVesseur and Lewandowski’s inductions bring the number of Augsburg wrestlers inducted into the NWCA Division III Wrestling Hall of Fame to 10, joining Dan Lewandowski ’97 in 2003, Gary Kroells ’93 in 2005, John Beatty ’90 in 2007, Steve Gliva ’85 in 2010, Nick Fornicoia ’93 in 2011, Joe Hoialmen ’93 in 2012, Jesse Armbruster ’96 in 2014 and Henry Gerten ’98 in 2016. Three Augsburg coaches have also earned NWCA Division III Wrestling Hall of Fame honors — 10-time national champion head coach Jeff Swenson ’79 in 2005, longtime assistant coach Scott Whirley ’82 in 2016, and longtime assistant coach Donny Wichmann ’89 in 2019.

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New Shakopee coach Marcus LeVesseur has top-ranked Sabers seeking three-peat

The highly accomplished wrestler took over for a coaching legend during a season altered by COVID-19. Plus a look at matchups to watch in the three-day state meet starting Thursday.

With everything Marcus LeVesseur has accomplished in his wrestling life — four Minnesota high school state championships, four NCAA Division III championships, an undefeated (155-0) college career, four-time Team USA selection, more than 30 victories as an MMA fighter — he admits to battling butterflies last fall before his first day as Shakopee wrestling coach.

That’s how he knew he was ready for the job.

LeVesseur was taking over for former coach Jim Jackson, the most successful wrestling coach in state history. Jackson stepped down last spring after shepherding the Sabers to back-to-back Class 3A state team championships, their first ever.

Replacing a prep coaching legend such as Jackson at the preeminent large-school program in the state? Continue reading at →

Shakopee Coach Jim Jackson to Retire

After five seasons leading the Sabers, Jim Jackson has chosen to retire from the head wrestling coaching position for Shakopee High School. Jackson’s long career is well-known in Minnesota wrestling with numerous conference and state wrestling championships on his resume. In Shakopee, he led the Sabers to four conference championships, three section championships, one 2nd place state finish and two state championships.

In September (2020), Jackson started a new career in the private sector and since then has been splitting time between coaching and his new job. “Trying to juggle both is not fair to our student athletes or our entire program, nor is it fair to the company I work for,” said Jackson. “With this change in my life, I feel like it is the right time to focus on my next chapter.”

Taking over the wrestling program in an interim position for this season is assistant coach Marcus Levesseur. Levesseur has also been with the Sabers for five years and has been an integral supporter and mentor of the team. His dedication will allow him to seamlessly lead the present program. Continue reading at →

Jackson’s rebirth

There’s not much Jim Jackson does on any given day that doesn’t draw criticism from someone, somewhere.

Those critics have followed Jackson throughout his coaching career, including his latest and likely last job at Shakopee High School, where he took over in 2015.

But, despite all the harsh words typed on wrestling message boards, Jackson has had a wildly successful career, and that fact can’t be argued by even his worst critics.

Jackson was the longtime coach at Apple Valley, taking over an already successful program and pushing it to new heights. He compiled a 618-27-3 record at Valley, helping the Eagles win two national titles and 14 team state titles before retiring in 2012. Continue reading at