What makes a great assistant wrestling coach?
The demands of a head wrestling coach, especially at the Division I level, can be both daunting and draining. Just ask Rob Eiter, who spent six seasons as the head wrestling coach at the University of Pennsylvania before leaving the position.
“It got to the point where I wasn’t enjoying the position,” said Eiter, a five-time U.S. Open champion in freestyle. “Coaching is tough. You can’t leave it at the office when you go home. I brought a lot of anxiety home with me. I just felt a change was needed.”
Eiter resigned as head wrestling coach at Penn after the 2013-14 season.
“It wasn’t a situation where I needed to get away from the sport,” said Eiter. “I’ve been doing this for a long time. It’s all I know how to do.”
As Eiter put it, “I sat on the beach and kind of got reenergized a little bit.”
Less than two months after resigning as head coach at Penn, Eiter accepted an assistant coaching position on Kerry McCoy’s staff at the University of Maryland.
Eiter says now as an assistant wrestling coach he has a lot more hands-on responsibilities with the wrestlers, a part of coaching he missed as a head coach.
“I’ve worked out more in the past year than I did in the six years I was head coach,” said Eiter.