By Stephen Stonebraker
After the 1998-1999 season, the Miami of Ohio Redhawks found themselves in violation of Title IX. The student body was made up of 54% female but females only represented 29% in athletics. As a result a decision was made to cut the men’s golf team, the men’s tennis team & wrestling. Golf has since been reinstated while tennis and wrestling remain dropped.
At one time believe it or not, the Redhawks had a team that at times could rival the Ohio State Buckeyes. Winner of eight Mid American Conference titles, the Redhawks had an assortment of phenomenal wrestlers.
While never an All American, Dave Range was still one of the best in Miami of Ohio history. The 1963 Garfield Heights high state champion won a Midlands title his sophomore season and the 1967 MAC title as a senior. Post his collegiate career he took a gold medal at the 1975 PAN-AMERICAN championships.
A standout in cross country, track & wrestling, Paul Schonauer only lost twice in three years of varsity wrestling competing for Euclid Senior high school. Both of those losses were in the state finals his sophomore and junior seasons. He won the Ohio high school state title his senior year capping off a high school campaign of 72-2.
Wrestling for the Redhawks, Schonauer qualified for three NCAA tournaments, winning the MAC title his junior season of 1974.
A three time MAC champion for the Redhawks, Campbell took seventh at the NCAA championships as a senior in 1993.
Janis was the Redhawks first three time MAC champion winning titles in 1962, 63′ & 64′.
You don’t find a lot of native Kentuckians who dominated at the NCAA Division I level back in the early 90’s but 1988 Kentucky State champion David Barnes did. While wrestling for the Redhawks, Barnes compiled a record of 114-30. Placing eighth at the NCAA tournament as a junior in 1992, he won MAC titles in 91′, 92 & 93′.
Post his collegiate career, Barnes coached at both the collegiate and high school level. Indiana, Illinois State (which no longer has a program), Miami of Ohio, & the College of Mount Saint Joseph were the colleges he coached at. Currently coaching at Cooper High School, he also coached at Ryle high School.
A three time NCAA qualifier for the Redhawks, Mike Migliaccio won a MAC title his junior season of 1994.
A graduate of Marietta high school, Russ Pickering won three MAC titles for the Redhawks being named the Outstanding wrestler of the tournament his junior season of 1979. In that year, he also placed eighth at the NCAA tournament.
|190, 177 lbs
MMA/UFC legend Mark Coleman began his collegiate career at Miami of Ohio after winning a state championship for Saint Joseph Central Catholic high school. While Competing for the Redhawks, Coleman was named the outstanding wrestler of the 1986 MAC tournament. He went on to place fourth at the NCAA championships.
Transferring to Ohio State, Coleman won both the BIG 10 and the NCAA title for the Buckeyes in 1988. Post his collegiate career, Coleman had success in international wrestling winning PAN-AMERICAN gold medals in 1990, 1991 & 1992. He was a silver medalist at the 1991 World Championships.
Another Redhawk named outstanding wrestler who won three MAC titles was Hamilton Munnell. Munnell took seventh place at the 1990 NCAA championships as a junior.
A three time MAC champion for the Redhawks in 1967, 68′ & 69′, Podgurski also took third twice at the Midlands championships. His brother John was also a Midlands place-winner for the Redhawks taking fourth.
A graduate of Goshen high school where he went 53-1 in his final two years of high school winning the state title as a senior, Mike Holcomb’s first workout partner when he first started learning wrestling as a black bear. A local in the area owned a couple of Black bears and Holcomb would wrestle both of them on a regular basis.
While wrestling for the Redhawks, Holcomb won three MAC titles and took Division I All American honors twice. His junior season of 1982 he placed fifth. After a redshirt in 1983, he came back in 1984 going 43-2, taking third at the NCAA championships. Post his collegiate career he made the Olympic team that same summer of 1984. A varsity track & field competitor for the Redhawks he was an NCAA qualifier in both the shotput and the discuss.
Holcomb coached at Miami of Ohio, Grand Valley State (another program we’ve lost), Ferris State (another program we’ve lost) and Lock Haven.