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National Wrestling Hall of Fame hosts clinic with Olympic gold medalist, two-time World Champion Kevin Jackson on Dec. 21

by Jack Carnefix, NWHOF

Kevin Jackson coaching image with Hall of Fame Clinic graphic

STILLWATER, Okla. – The National Wrestling Hall of Fame will host a clinic, talk and Q&A with Olympic gold medalist, two-time World champion and National Wrestling Hall of Fame Distinguished Member Kevin Jackson on December 21 at 7 p.m. at the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.


Tickets for the clinic can be purchased at bit.ly/KevinJacksonNWHOFClinic


The clinic is being held in conjunction with the Second-Annual National Wrestling Hall of Fame Dual Classic presented by Cliff Keen Athletic and Territory Resources on December 21 and 22 at Gallagher-Iba Arena.


All-session tickets are $15 for youth (18 and under) and $25 for adults. Groups of 12 or more are able to purchase all-session tickets for $10 each. Individual session tickets will be available on the day of the event.


Tickets for the Dual Classic can be purchased at bit.ly/2023NWHOFDualClassicTickets


In addition to Cliff Keen Athletic and Territory Resources, sponsors for the event include the United States Army and Visit Stillwater.


Fourteen of the 16 teams competing in the Dual Classic are ranked in the Top 40 in MatScouts first national high school rankings.


Rokfin will broadcast all 40 dual matches on the MatScouts channel at Rokfin.com/MatScouts. Rokfin is a subscription service and it is recommended that accounts be created in advance at rokfin.com.


Jackson is in his third season as an assistant coach for the University of Michigan wrestling program after serving the previous four years as USA Wrestling's National Freestyle Developmental Coach.


Jackson spent 15 total years with USA Wrestling's freestyle program in several coaching capacities, including eight as USAW National Freestyle Coach (2001-08). His leadership covered two Olympic cycles and four U.S. Olympic medals, including gold medalists and Hall of Fame Distinguished Members Cael Sanderson (2004) and Henry Cejudo (2008). The United States also won two world championships team trophies in men's freestyle under Jackson, placing second in 2003 and third in 2006, and captured 11 individual world medals, including gold from Hall of Fame Distinguished Member Bill Zadick in 2006.


As USA Wrestling's freestyle resident coach (1998-2000), Jackson served as the primary coach for 2000 Olympic gold medalist and Hall of Fame Distinguished Member Brandon Slay.


In his most recent role as developmental coach, Jackson worked with elite age-group freestyle wrestlers, launching and overseeing the Elite Accelerated Program (EAP) at the Olympic Training Center and coaching Team USA's cadet and junior world teams. Over his tenure (2017-21), the USA development program had its best world results in its history. Jackson led cadet and junior world team athletes to 43 of 73 possible medals (55 percent), while 40 percent won gold medals. He also assisted in coaching U.S. freestyle wrestlers on the Senior level, including two-time world champion J'den Cox.


Jackson served eight years as head coach at Iowa State (2010-17), during which the Cyclones crowned four NCAA champions -- Hall of Fame Distinguished Member Jake Varner (2010), David Zabriskie (2010), Jon Reader (2011) and Kyven Gadson (2015) -- as well as 14 All-Americans and nine Big 12 champions. He led ISU to a third-place finish at the 2010 NCAA Championships and five total top-15 NCAA finishes over his tenure.


He also had coaching stints with the U.S. Army, Sunkist Kids and Arizona State earlier in his career.


Considered one of the greatest freestyle wrestlers in U.S. history, Jackson captured the 82kg/181-pound gold medal at the 1992 Olympic Games in Barcelona and claimed 82kg titles at the 1991 and 1995 World Championships. He was a four-time U.S. world team member, also taking fourth in 1993, and contributed to the United States' world team titles in 1991 and 1993. Jackson also won three World Cup gold medals (1993, '95, '97) and two Pan American Games and two Pan American Championships titles.


Jackson was the recipient of the 1995 John Smith Award as National Freestyle Wrestler of the Year, 1992 Amateur Wrestling News Man of the Year and 1991 USA Wrestling and USOC Wrestler of the Year.


As a collegiate wrestler, Jackson was a four-time NCAA All-American at 158 and 167 pounds. He spent his first three seasons at Louisiana State University (1983-85), twice placing third at NCAAs, before transferring to Iowa State after LSU dropped wrestling. He was an NCAA runner-up for ISU and contributed to the Cyclones' NCAA team championships in 1987.


He is a Distinguished Member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame and the UWW International Wrestling Hall of Fame and an inductee into both the Iowa State and LSU Athletics Halls of Fame.


Jackson is a native of Lansing, Michigan, where he was a two-time state champion at Eastern High School and a Junior National Greco-Roman champion.


National Wrestling Hall of Fame & Museum

America's shrine to the sport of wrestling, the National Wrestling Hall of Fame & Museum was founded as a nonprofit organization in 1976 to honor the sport of wrestling, preserve its history, recognize extraordinary individual achievements, and inspire future generations. The National Wrestling Hall of Fame has museums in Stillwater, Oklahoma, and Waterloo, Iowa. The Stillwater, Oklahoma, location reopened in June 2016 following a $3.8 million renovation while the Waterloo, Iowa, location reopened in March 2019 after undergoing a $1.4 million renovation. Both museums now feature interactive exhibits and electronic kiosks, as well as the opportunity to watch NCAA Championship matches from the 1930s to present day. Stillwater also has the John T. Vaughan Hall of Honors where the greatest names in wrestling are recognized, including iconic granite plaques presented to Distinguished Members since the Hall of Fame opened in 1976. The museum has the largest collection of wrestling artifacts and memorabilia in the world, including the most collegiate and Olympic wrestling uniforms. Wrestling truly is for everyone and the diversity and accessibility of the sport continues to be highlighted through exhibits featuring females, African-Americans, Asian Americans, Native Americans, and Latino Americans. There is also a library featuring historical documents, including NCAA guides and results, as well as books on the sport.


For more information about the Hall of Fame, please visit www.NWHOF.org.


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