June 3, 2013
Former Minnesota wrestler, Dan Chander, was inducted as a Distinguished Member at the Wrestling Hall of Fame in Stillwater, Okla. this past weekend.
Chandler wrestled collegiately at the University of Minnesota where he earned two top-four finishes, third in 1973 and fourth in 1974, at the Big Ten Championships. That success was just a taste of things to come. His greatest triumphs came after college, in the Greco-Roman discipline of the sport.
His first international success came in 1975 when he won the first of 12 national Greco-Roman championships at 180.5 pounds and the gold medal at the Pan American Games. In all, Chandler won seven AAU National Greco-Roman titles and five United States Wrestling Federation/USA Wrestling championships over the next 10 years of competition. In 1979, he won his second Pan-American Games gold medal.
Chandler was also a member of U.S. Olympic Greco-Roman teams in 1976, 1980, and 1984 as well as World Championship teams in 1975, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1981, and 1983.
After retiring from competition after the 1984 Olympic Games, Chandler became a prominent wrestling coach for the United States. He has been on the Greco-Roman coaching staff for every Olympic Games since 1988 along with several U.S. World teams. At the 2012 Olympic Games in London, Chandler was named the head coach for the Greco-Roman team.
The Minnesota native has also been a leader at the state and local level. Chandler served as an assistant coach at the University of Minnesota from 1975-1985 and was the head wrestling coach at St. Thomas University from 1986-1988. He has also served as a state coach for Minnesota USA Wrestling and for the Minnesota Storm.
Dan Chandler will be remembered as one of the most successful and influential Greco-Roman wrestlers in the United States. His success as a wrestler, coach, and contributor will have a lasting legacy.
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