If Lorain High was looking for someone with credentials to fill its wrestling coach position, the Titans hit the jackpot in Mark Moos.
The former St. Edward star and Lorain resident will be recommended as the next head coach during the school board meeting next Tuesday.
For those unfamiliar with Moos’ mat resume, here’s what he’s been up to the last 15 years:
- Was the first Ohio wrestler to win national titles in Greco Roman and freestyle at the Cadet national championships in Fargo, N.D., in 1998.
- Won the 112-pound Division I state championship as a junior at St. Edward in 2001, then won the 119-pound state title in 2002.
- Won a national high school title in 2002, and a junior national freestyle title in 2001.
- Helped the Eagles win four Division I state titles.
- Placed fourth at the world team trials.
- Named a two-time Asics All-American, selected to the USA’s Dream Team and picked for the Cliff Keen Dream Team.
- Was named the No. 1 recruit in the nation in 2002.
- Helped Michigan win two Big Ten titles, and helped the Wolverines finish as NCAA runner-up.
- Was a four-year starter and three-time Big Ten Tournament placer.
- Was a three-time NCAA Tournament qualifier.
- Has been an assistant coach at Southview (2008-10), St. Edward (2009-12) and Avon Lake (2012-13).
- Has coached 20 state champions and eight national champions.
“I really wanted to be a head coach,” Moos said. “There’s been other opportunities, just not the right one.”
Moos said good friend Mark Jayne — an Elyria resident who won three state titles at St. Edward — had interviewed for the Lorain job, but then decided to join the Eagles staff.
“When (Jayne) didn’t take it, I contacted (athletic director) Bryan (Koury) and asked to talk to him about it,” Moos said. “Now … here we are.”
Moos began wrestling under Ron Burnett when he was 6 years old, then began training under Erik Burnett — Ron’s son and the current Elyria High coach — in the sixth grade.
Early success was hard to come by — “I went two years without winning a match, and then beat a girl twice in my very last tournament of my second year,” Moos said — but he began to see his hand raised more and more as his hours on the mat grew.
“I was Burnett-trained my entire life,” Moos said. “I went to them all year round, even when I was at St. Ed’s, I’d go up there at least twice a week after wrestling practices.”
Moos received a scholarship to wrestle at Michigan, where he was under the tutelage of Joe McFarland and assistant Mike Kulczycki — another St. Edward grad and two-time state champion.
“When you’re around people who are such great coaches — especially Mike Kulczycki and Erik Burnett — you just have to learn it,” Moos said. “You pick up little things, you remember the goofy little stories they said that made you remember how to do it right and you remember the butt whippings they gave you when you didn’t remember to do the moves right.”
Moos said his time coaching at Southview and being from the city helped in his decision to finally take the reins of a program.
“The Lorain wrestling community is just unreal,” he said. “They have the best support. Not even just the parents, but the alumni and their parents are always showing up and helping out. They really love their wrestling. It’s awesome.
“That takes a lot of pressure off me coming in as a first-year head coach. That’s just a huge, huge weight off my shoulders.”
Moos said most of the Titans coaching staff from last season will return, but the big change he’d like to make is in the schedule.
“As of right now, we’re not really locked into anything,” he said. “I’ve been looking around and have some emails out. Hopefully next year we’ll have some better tournaments for sure. That’s one of the first big things I want to handle, because (Lorain’s) schedule was pretty bad outside of the Maumee Bay (Classic).”
The one item that wasn’t listed in the above accomplishments was Moos’ passion for wrestling, which is obvious when he is asked about the sport.
“I love watching it, I love wrestling … just everything about the sport is awesome,” he said. “It’s been a part of my life since I was 6. I was wrestling year-round since I was 9. I’d have way too much time on my hands if it wasn’t for staying with the sport.”