Dan Spilde

Dan Spilde grew up on a family farm with parents Arlan and Nancy and older brother Kent. He started his wrestling career as a youth in the Stoughton wrestling program. Even with the demands of the farm and full-time employment off the farm for Arlan, his parents always made time for wrestling. Dan took to wrestling and never looked back, never ever thinking about walking away from the sport. Dan attended Stoughton high school, where he wrestled for legendary coach and National Hall of Fame member LaVerne Pieper. He posted a career record of 117-17-1 and won an individual state title in 1987 and took fifth in 1988 during his senior year where he served as a captain. He was very fortunate to wrestle on some incredible teams! His freshman and sophomore years the team finished as state runner-up, and his junior and senior year they were state champions. In 1988 his team set a record of 140 points scored at the state tournament. That record stood many years and was not broken until there were more weight classes. After graduating from Stoughton, Dan moved on to the University of Wisconsin and wrestled for Olympic silver medalist and NCAA champion Andy Rein. He red-shirted his first year with Badgers and competed as a part time starter the following year and was able to win the spot for the Big Ten tournament. The next three years Dan competed as a full-time starter, never missing a dual or tournament and qualifying for the NCAA's all three years. He was a captain his senior year and won a Big 10 Title at 142 pounds and finished his campaign as a Badger with a career record of 99-41. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin with a degree in animal science, Dan went back to the farm with his family. However, he did not want to give up wrestling in his life. He was given the opportunity to be an assistant coach under LaVerne Pieper. It was a dream come true for him to return to Stoughton and work with one of his biggest mentors. After one year as an assistant, Coach Pieper turned the program over to him and he became head coach at Stoughton High School. In his first year, Stoughton tied for an unofficial state title scoring the most points at the state individual tournament. During his tenure thus far, he has led the Vikings to 17 Badger Conference titles, 21 WIAA Regional titles, 13 WIAA Division 1 State Team Qualifying berths, 5 WIAA Team State Runner-up finishes, 4 State Individual titles (Recognized by the WWCA), and back-to-back State Team Championships in 2018 and 2019. Dan has led 84 Individual Badger Conference Champions, 117 State Individual Qualifiers, 65 State Place Winners, and 19 Individual State Champions. In addition, he had two student/athletes make the Greco World Team. He has been recognized by the Wisconsin State Journal as Coach of the Year for Wrestling five times and Wisconsin Wrestling Coaches Association District Coach of the Year eight times. Dan has been blessed with numerous great coaches working by his side throughout his career in Stoughton. None more significant than Bob Empey who came to Stoughton and joined the program as an assistant in 1996 and then joined forces with Dan as co-head coach in 1999. Dan's coaching career also included volunteering for many years in the youth program in Stoughton and doing volunteer clinics helping other programs. His career expanded as his children Cade, Luke, and Claire all chose to wrestle. Dan has a bronze level coaching certificate with USA wrestling. He served as coach for the Wisconsin Schoolboy Team in 2015, as well as assisting with some girls wrestling functions. Dan is very grateful for the sport of wrestling and what it has taught him and done for him over the years. To this day, many of his greatest friends are those he has met through wrestling. He is extremely proud of all the young athletes that have turned into great people. He is very proud of the effort and accomplishments of Cade, Luke, and Claire and most importantly, he is grateful for the 100% support of his wife Lisa. Without her moral support, advice, encouragement, and sometimes even personal counseling, his coaching career would not have made it this far. She is truly his better half! Dan would like to extend a thank you to all who were involved in nominating and accepting him into this prestigious Hall of Fame. Graduate of Stoughton High School 1988 Stoughton, WI Record: 117-17-1 1987 WIAA State Champion 132 lbs. 1988 WIAA State Placewinners 5th 3x Badger Conference Champion 3x Badger State Champion 2x State Team Runners-up 1985, 1986 2x State Team Champions 1987, 1988 1988 Team Captain Graduate of the University of Wisconsin 1993 Record: 99-41 1993 Big Ten Champion 142 lbs. 3x NCAA Division 1 National Qualifier 3x "Never Say Die Award" Winner Captain 1993 Coaching Assistant Coach---Stoughton High School 1993-94 Head Wresting Coach---Stoughton High School 1995-1998 Co-Head Coach"”Stoughton High School 1999-Present 8x WWCA District 5 Coach of the Year 5x Wisconsin State Journal Coach of the Year Badger Conference Team Championships (17) 84 Badger Conference Champions 117 WIAA Individual State Qualifiers 65 WIAA Individual State Place Winners 19 Individual State Champions 7 USA Wrestling High School All-Americans 2 Greco World Team Members 21 WIAA Regional Team Championships 13 WIAA Division 1 State Team Berths 4x WIAA Individual State Tournament Champions 5x WIAA Division 1 Team State Team Runner-up 2018 and 2019 WIAA Division 1 State Team Champions 2009 WIAA/Rural Mutual Insurance Team State Sportsmanship Award Winners 2017, 2018, 2019 Nationally Ranked Teams Career Dual Record: 399-100


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