Head Wrestling Coach Christopher Hacker
Chris Hacker will head Otero Junior College’s new wrestling program.
Addington stated that OJC is extremely proud of the young man that has been hired to build this exciting new program. Head Coach Chris Hacker is a two-time high school state wrestling champion from Oklahoma. He is a four-time high school champion in both Greco and Freestyle wrestling. He is a high school All American wrestler and was a collegiate wrestler for the University of Nebraska - Lincoln.
While at Nebraska, Hacker earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology. He went on to the University of Central Oklahoma to earn a Master of Education degree. While earning his master’s degree, Hacker was a graduate assistant coach for three years at Central Oklahoma. While being mentored by head coach, David James, who has been with the program for over 30 years, Hacker helped coach 10 All-American wrestlers, three National Champions and two NCAA Top 5 Team finishers.
Hacker will spend the next few months, prior to the 2016-2017 academic year, recruiting for OJC’s inaugural team. Hacker hopes to bring in up to 40 student athletes to vie for a spot on the team and build the foundation for the new program.
Hacker is looking forward to building the OJC wrestling program into a program respected for its high standard of excellence in both athletics and academics.
Assistant Wrestling Coach Matthew Paeth
Matthew Paeth, Holley, N.Y., joins Chris Hacker as the coaching staff OJC’s new wrestling program.
Paeth began wrestling at the age of 7. He is a four-time New York State Champion in Greco Roman wrestling and a three-time USA Wrestling All-American. While training for USA wrestling and international events, Paeth was a member of the Buffalo Wrestling Club at the University at Buffalo. He placed fourth in the 2004 Eastern US Olympic team trials.
A USA Wrestling Bronze certified coach, he has experience coaching at the high school and college levels. While at Kansas Wesleyan University, Paeth helped start the first wrestling program in the school’s history and helped to recruit student athletes. While at Waldorf College in Forrest City, Iowa, he coached 9 NAIA national qualifiers and 2 NAIA All Americans. He owned and operated WNY Elite Wrestling Club, a wrestling club designed to bring elite wrestlers from all over Western New York together to train during the summer months.
What drew Paeth to Otero Junior College was the fit for him as a coach. “I hope to help our student athletes get to the next level in their education as well as their wrestling,” said Paeth.
Paeth is a graduate of the University of Buffalo with a degree in agricultural engineering. In his free time, Paeth enjoys hunting and fishing. He is also a die-hard Buffalo Bills fan.