Pat Pecora

Pat Pecora was a 4-year starter, an all-conference wrestler, and the team captain at West Liberty State, (now West Liberty University). In 1976, he was hired by the University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown, and has been the coach at UPJ since that time. Since 2008, he has doubled as Pitt-Johnstown’s Athletic Director. Pat’s teams have captured 21 NCAA Regional Championships, and in 1996 & 1999 were NCAA Division II National Champions. Pat has been the NCAA Regional Coach of the Year 16 times. Pat’s teams have won 49 team tournaments and an amazing 569 dual meets. That currently places Pat third on the All-Time Career Wins list for NCAA Wrestling Coaches in all Divisions. Overall, Pat has led the Division II Mountain Cats to 32 Top-20 national finishes, 20 Top-10 finishes, and 10 top-five finishes. Pat has produced 141 All-Americans, and 10 individual national champions who collectively combined for 17 National Championship titles. Among them was Shane Valko, the 2010 National Wrestler of the Year. His most famous product is 6-time National Champion, and Distinguished Member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame, Carlton Haselrig. Additionally, Pat’s teams led the nation in NWCA Academic All American selections from 1997 through 2000. Since 1990, Coach Pecora has coached over 100 Academic All Americans. In 1995 & 1999, Pat was named NCAA Division II National Coach of the Year. Also in 1999, he received the National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) Coaching Excellence Award, given to the best coach in all divisions. Pat is the Division II Representative for the NWCA for 10 years, and is a member of the NWCA Board of Directors. Pat was also the president of that organization for two terms. He is a member the PA Sports Hall of Fame-East Boro Chapter, the Cambria County HOF, the West Liberty State College HOF, the PA Wrestling Coaches HOF, the NCAA Division II Wrestling HOF, and the Pitt-Johnstown Athletics HOF. In addition, Pat earned the 2008 United States Marine Corps Excellence in Leadership Award. Pat and his wife Tracy reside in Johnstown, where they raised four children.

Awards:

Year
2017
Award
Lifetime Service to Wrestling
Chapter/Region
Pennsylvania

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