From the Manchester College Archives

News Release

Contact: Jeri Kornegay
Director of Media and Public Relations


“Grandpa Spartan” Tom Jarman

to retire Aug. 1 as athletics

director, wrestling coach


       Manchester College’s athletics director and head wrestling coach, Tom Jarman, will retire Aug. 1. The impact of Jarman’s 18 years of leadership and mentoring, however, will continue in a highly respected athletics program solidly based in academics, equity and integrity.

      “Tom Jarman is one of the great mentors and coaches in the sport of wrestling,” said Mike Moyer, executive director of the National Wrestling Coaches Association. “Few, if any coaches have dedicated more professional years to the development of young people to reach their fullest human potential through participation in wrestling.”

       Jarman, with Division I experience gained as head wrestling coach at Northwestern University, transformed a struggling Spartan athletic program. Immediately, he addressed inequities in the women’s athletics program. This year, MC women’s basketball, golf and tennis advanced to national NCAA championships. Last year, the Spartans won the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference Commissioner’s Cup for accumulating the most points in all sports. Under Jarman, the College has competed in national championships in nine sports.

       As Manchester’s head wrestling coach, Jarman has produced 22 All-Americans, 26 Academic All-Americans, a national champion and three Top 10 national team finishes. Many of his assistants and student-athletes today are coaches, perpetuating his influence by setting strong examples and high expectations for future generations of athletes and coaches.

       “Tom Jarman reflects the best that is Division III athletics – integration of athletic with academic success, sportsmanship and integrity. He brought a clarity of purpose and an esprit de corps to Manchester athletics,” said College President Jo Young Switzer.

       His peers agree. In 2003, Jarman entered the National Wrestling Coaches Association NCAA Division III Hall of Fame, and six other halls of fame. He has amassed a lifetime wrestling record of 414-144-1.

       “I cannot imagine the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference without Tom Jarman,” said Commissioner Tom Bohlsen. “He elevated the level of coaching, both in Xs and Os and philosophically. He has helped so many of the young athletic directors in the conference, as a confidant and advisor. He helped me.”

      Jarman was no stranger to the spotlight before he joined Manchester College. He co-authored Wrestling for Beginners, which remains one of the top-selling books for young wrestlers. He was 1963 NCAA national wrestling champion at 158 pounds and a two-time All-American while a student at Wheaton College.

       “I daily contemplate the responsibilities and privileges of being a part of this place,” said Jarman, fondly called Grandpa Spartan. “Service is palpable here and I appreciate and enjoy what it means to expect students to grow in their faith and their learning and service. At Manchester College, that’s not prescriptive, it’s a shared dynamic.”

       A national search is under way for a dynamic leader who understands how to sustain winning teams while articulating to athletes that they are students first, said Glenn Sharfman, vice president and dean for academic affairs.

       To learn more about Spartan athletics and its student-athletes, click here.

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