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The 2000 Olympian is named head coach of the U.S. Greco Roman Wrestling Team

by: COURTESY CLACKAMAS COMMUNITY COLLEGE - OLYMPIC MEDALIST MATT LINDLANDArea Olympic medalist and businessman Matt Lindland received the greatest honor of his career last week when USA Wrestling named him coach of the National Greco Roman Wrestling Team.

“Outside of raising two wonderful kids and having a great marriage, this is the greatest accomplishment of my life,” Lindland said. “It means everything. It means giving back to my sport, working with the best athletes in the country. It’s a dream job....

“There is only one job like it in the entire country. There’s one coach for the country’s elite athletes in men’s freestyle wrestling, one coach for the best athletes in women’s freestyle, and I’m it in Greco Roman. There are college coaches that get to work with the best athletes on their team. I get to work with the best Greco Roman wrestlers in the entire U.S. It’s truly a dream come true.”

Lindland said he planned to head for the Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs later this week, where he’ll begin training the U.S. Greco Roman Team for the Pan American Championships, scheduled for Mexico City in mid-July.

After that Lindland says he’ll train the U.S. Greco Roman Team for the World Championships, which take place in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, Sept. 12-14.

“My job is to train our national team,” said Lindland. “Work with the top three athletes in each weight class, and prepare our future Olympians for the 2016 Olympics.”

Lindland was himself an accomplished athlete in wrestling and in mixed martial arts.

Lindland grew up in Redland and he is a 1988 graduate of Gladstone High School, where he wrestled under Rich Holliman and placed second in the state his senior year.

He wrestled two years for Clackamas Community College, earning a National Junior College Athletics Association national title his sophomore year.

He then wrestled for the University of Nebraska on a full-ride scholarship, and he went on to win four Senior National titles in Greco Roman.

He was assistant coach at Nebraska from 1996 through 2000. He represented the U.S. in Greco Roman Wrestling at the 2000 Summer Olympics and won a silver medal. He was a silver medalist in Greco Roman again in 2001 when he wrestled for the U.S. at the World Championships in Patras, Greece.

Since 2001 Lindland has had his share of success in mixed martial arts, both as an athlete and coach.

He started his own mixed marshall arts and fitness gym, Team Quest, in Portland in 2000. He’s coached at Team Quest and been a volunteer assistant coach at Clackamas Community College for most of the past 14 years.

He helped CCC coach Josh Rhoden develop Clackamas Community College into a national power. The Cougars were national team champions in 2011. They were national dual meet champions this past season and they placed third at the 2014 NJCAA Championships, with a record seven All-Americans.

Lindland said that Team Quest will continue to operate in his absence.

“Our biggest thing is we try to build leaders in our community,” said Lindland. “And they inspire others to do great things. Team Quest will go on.”

Clackamas Community College coach Josh Rhoden said of Lindland: “Matt has been incredible for wrestling in Oregon and across the US. He is a dedicated coach and great leader who we will miss having here at Clackamas. It has been great to see him work and talk technique. He is a great hire for US Greco because he is an excellent coach and a tireless worker! He expects his team to be great! I honestly believe he will do some very exciting things with team USA!”

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