The National Wrestling Hall of Fame of the Upstate New York State Chapter announced their 2019 inductees into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame and who will be receiving the Lifetime Service Award. The list includes Presbyterian College Director of Wrestling Mark Cody.
“I am grateful to receive this honor. It’s special to be recognized for what you have given to the sport of wrestling,” said Cody. “I hope I have served both my former and current student-athletes well.”
Cody was hired in December of 2017 to be the Blue Hose Inaugural Director of Wrestling after spending the prior six seasons as the head wrestling coach at the University of Oklahoma.
In Norman, Cody led the Sooners to four top-13 finishes, including a 10th place finish in 2014. Under his leadership, the Sooners produced 10 All-Americans, and three national finalists, including two National Champions, Kendric Maple (2013), and Cody Brewer (2015).
Cody was also instrumental in developing wrestlers off the mat and in fostering an OU Wrestling presence in the community. His student-athletes earned a total of 13 National Wrestling Coaches Association Academic All-America honors, and OU’s six Academic All-Americans during the 2013-14 school year were most in the nation. He also instituted an anti-bullying campaign in 2015 in which his wrestlers and staff routinely spoke to students at area elementary schools.
Cody came to Oklahoma after nine years at American, where he led the Eagles to a program-best fifth-place finish at the 2011 NCAA Championships. The team produced three All-Americans after qualifying six for the tournament, while also posting a school record 3.48 grade point average.
He took over the program at American after it had been dropped and then resurrected with just 4.5 scholarships available for seven wrestlers. Cody helped American earn its first national qualifiers in 2005 which led to six straight season of top 25 finishes as a team and earning trips to the NCAA Tournament.
His tenure at American included the school’s first national champion, 14 All-Americans and 16 NCAA qualifiers (all since 2005) and 21 academic All-Americans. His American teams were strong in the classroom as well, earning the highest GPA in Division I wrestling in 2008 and 2009, while finishing second in 2010.
Cody came to American after spending two seasons as an assistant coach at Oklahoma State. He helped OSU to a Big 12 Championship and a fifth-place finish at the 2002 NCAA Championships. In addition, the squad earned recognition from the NWCA as a top-25 academic team, and two were named Academic All-America by the NWCA. Nine were also named to the Academic All-Big 12 team.
Before joining Oklahoma State, Cody served as the upper-weights coach for 12 years at the Nebraska. During that time, he was responsible for bringing in some of the nation’s top recruiting classes, including national champions Tolly Thompson (Hwt.) and Brad Vering (197). Vering later became a two-time Olympian with Cody in his corner.
While Cody was at Nebraska, 23 Cornhuskers were named All-America, including Rulon Gardner, who later captured the heavyweight gold medal at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games. Cody spent the 1986-87 season as an assistant coach at Oklahoma State. He was also an assistant at Bloomsburg University during the 1985-86 season and for the University of Missouri in 1984-85.
From Binghamton, N.Y., Cody was a three-time All-American as a wrestler in college. He spent two years at the State University of New York at Delhi before transferring to Missouri in 1983. His greatest success came during his senior season of 1984-85 when he earned All-America status and was named the team’s most outstanding wrestler. He graduated from Bellevue University with a Bachelor of Science degree in business. He was also a member of the New York Athletic Club, he was a 198-pound finalist at the 1988 U.S. Olympic Trials.