Almost exactly one year after being named interim head wrestling coach at the Virginia Military Institute, Chris Skretkowicz has lost the “interim” portion of his title, having been officially promoted to take the helm of the Keydets mat program, the Lexington, Va. school announced Thursday.
In April 2013, Skretkowicz was named interim head coach after long-time head coach Jack Trudgeon was promoted to an administrative position within VMI’s athletic department. Skretkowicz had been an assistant at VMI for seven seasons.
Skretkowicz becomes the 15th head coach since VMI’s wrestling program earned varsity status in 1921.
“I'm very pleased to appoint Chris as our permanent head coach,” said VMI athletic director Dr. Dave Diles. “He has an exceptional competitive background, a proven track record as an assistant coach, and he demonstrated excellent leadership during his interim tenure. In addition, Chris' values and integrity make him a great match for VMI. The team responded very well to his coaching style and I'm looking forward to working with him to advance our wrestling program.”
Skretowicz expressed his gratitude for the Institute's vote of confidence in his coaching abilities.
“I am excited to have the opportunity to guide the VMI wrestling program into the future, said Skretkowicz. “As countless great coaches have done before me, I look forward to developing young men to become successful wrestlers as well as leaders in all walks of life. I would like to thank Dr. Diles, General (J.H. Binford) Peay (the school’s Superintendent), and the Institute for this opportunity.”
Prior to becoming an assistant coach at VMI, Skretkowicz crafted a successful wrestling career at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y. He was a three-time Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) champion and a two-time NCAA All-American at 197 pounds in 2003 and 2004. A native of Hamburg, N.J., the 6’ 5” Skretkowicz compiled a 140-24 record for the Pride, going a perfect 26-0 against CAA opponents. In addition, Skretkowicz was a four-time NCAA qualifier.