April 15, 2010
COLUMBIA, Mo. - The University of Missouri Wrestling Head Coach Brian Smith has announced the hire of assistant coach Jason Mester. Mester, who has six years of coaching experience, has served as the strength and conditioning volunteer coach at Nebraska for the past five seasons.
"We're happy to have Jason join the University of Missouri Athletic Department, and to welcome him into our wrestling family," Smith said. "I know that he comes from a great background having worked under [Nebraska Head Coach Mark] Manning, and [Central Michigan Head Coach Tom] Borrelli. Jason's competitiveness, intensity, and core values are all going to have a positive impact on the future of Missouri wrestling."
"I feel great about this opportunity. I'm excited to come down and work for such a strong program," said Mester. "When I visited I met most of the people who are involved with the team and I was overwhelmed by how dedicated everyone is. They are all very committed to what they are doing, and I can not wait to be a part of that."
In his time at Nebraska, the Huskers garnered 14 All-America honors, three NCAA finalists in four appearances, and two National Champions. In addition to Nebraska earning their first ever Big 12 team title, the Huskers saw two fourth place team finishes at the NCAA Wrestling National Championships in 2008 and 2009.
"I am so appreciative of the opportunity Mark Manning has given me at Nebraska, and I have learned so much from him. He's been a Big 12 and National Coach of the year, and I can take all of the experiences I have had under him and use them later in my coaching career," said Mester. "There is nothing better than the Big 12 when it comes to wrestling. I'm a competitive person, and the Big 12 is not an easy or forgiving conference, with each year it gets better. I am up to the challenge, and I look forward to helping our guys at Missouri work toward Big 12 individual and team titles."
Mester started his coaching career at his alma mater, Central Michigan, in 2004. As an assistant coach, he helped the Chippewas to a 12th-place finish at the NCAA Championships in 2005.
A 2004 graduate of Central Michigan, Mester is a three-time Mid-American Conference Champion, and two-time All-American. At the time of his graduation, he ranked third all-time on Central Michigan's charts with an .815 career-winning percentage.
"There's a big difference between being a coach and a wrestler, but it helps. When it's tough on the guys, it's nice to understand where they are at, because I have been through it," said Mester.
A native of Mineral Point, Wis. Mester is engaged to Lory Baker, and will marry this May.
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