Ottawa University is pleased to announce the hiring of Kevin Andres as head men’s and women’s wrestling coach. Andres will be the first coach in program history.
“We are very excited about adding an experienced professional in Coach Andres to start our programs,” said Athletic Director Arabie Conner. “His level of professionalism and experience with building collegiate programs from the ground up the right way with a focus on scholar athletes is going to give the programs an immediate jump start in both recruiting and overall academic and athletic competitiveness. We’re excited to welcome Coach Andres and his family to Ottawa University.”
Andres is not new to starting a wrestling program. He has started four different wrestling programs in 16 years of being involved in collegiate wrestling. Andres has coached 27 wrestling All-Americans (19 men and eight women), has had teams finish in the top 10 in the nation seven times, and was a four-time National Collegiate Wrestling Association (NCWA) Southeastern Conference Coach of the Year. Andres is also heavily involved in the NCWA and works closely as a founding member and as an executive board member. In 2007, he was inducted into the NCWA Hall of Fame.
“My family and I feel fortunate to have the opportunity to come to Ottawa,” said Andres. “I love coaching, and the challenge of building a program from the start is really exciting. The university has been so welcoming, and I look forward to building on the university’s tradition of success. I can’t wait to get started and am confident we can build something special at Ottawa.”
Prior to coming to Ottawa, Andres spent nine years as head men’s and women’s wrestling coach at Mercer University in Macon, Ga. While at MU, he established NCWA and National Collegiate Women’s Wrestling Association (NCWWA) wrestling programs and was the NCWA National Compliance Officer. As a compliance officer, Andres monitored eligibility of more than 100 teams and 1,100 athletes. He also participated in developing rules and regulations for the NCWA and supervised five other regional compliance officers. Under his leadership at Mercer University, the Bears won four Georgia State Championships and finished second once in the tournament’s six year history. MU also amassed four top-ten finishes at the National Duals Championship, which started in 2009, and one top-ten finish at the National Championships.
While at Mercer University Andres was director of recreational sports, was the Southeastern Conference commissioner for the NCWA, was the NCWA Conference chairman, and was director of campus life.
Before going to Mercer University, Andres was the director of student activities, head wrestling coach, and director of camps and conferences at Belmont Abbey College. There he advised the College Union Board, the Greek Council, the Commuter Council, and the senior class. He also started an NCWA wrestling program. While at BAC, the wrestling program had two top-10 finishes at the National Championships.
Andres has also published two articles, “The Role Title IX Plays in Life (or Death) of Wrestling” and “No Longer Just a Club.” Both articles were published in Wrestling USA.
“Adding men’s and women’s wrestling programs to our campus community has created a buzz of excitement,” said Conner. “We’re excited to build our programs with a coach who is extremely passionate about the sport and who is full of ideas for implementation and growth of the programs.”
Andres' first day on the job will be December 2. The search for the program’s first graduate assistant coach will begin immediately.