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Former Tiger Edgmon lands Newton coaching job

6/29/2014

By AUSTIN COLBERT

acolbert@dailynews.net

Tommy Edgmon won three state titles as a wrestler at Goddard High School before he graduated in 2005. After two years wrestling at Pratt Community College and two more wrestling at Fort Hays State University, Edgmon was hired as an assistant wrestling coach at Hays High School in 2011. He then started working with a talented freshman named Preston Weigel.

Four years later, Weigel, an Oklahoma State University wrestling signee, would join Edgmon as a three-time state champion, an accomplishment Edgmon was almost more proud of than his own.

"It was very humbling knowing that I was coming in as a two-time All-American in college and there were days that I could not take down Preston," Edgmon said. "Winning three state titles myself is nice, but coaching a kid and coaching him to three state titles was even a better feeling. Watching him succeed, watching him grow. When he came in he was at 145 (pounds), so he was right in my weight class. I was able to work out with him every day."

Having a kid like Weigel on one's resume doesn't hurt, either. Edgmon's background as both a wrestler and a coach was enough to convince Newton High School to hire the 28 year old as its next head wrestling coach, a position Edgmon will begin this fall.

Edgmon graduated this spring with his master's degree in health and human performance, with an emphasis on sports administration, from FHSU. This degree, along with his undergraduate degrees in education and health and human performance from FHSU, will allow him to possibly take on various administrative duties at Newton along with coaching and teaching physical education.

"I applied at a couple other schools throughout the year knowing that I was graduating from Fort Hays. I was looking to go somewhere and start coaching and take over a program," Edgmon said. "I'm very excited. I'm from Wichita so I get to live closer to home and Newton is traditionally a pretty strong program. Back when I was in high school they were pretty dominant. This past year they took seventh (in Class 5A), so I'm really looking forward to getting in there and making a good program a strong program."

Edgmon spent two years wrestling at FHSU under Chas Thompson, who also was Edgmon's wrestling coach at Pratt Community College. The two came together in Hays for the 2008-2009 season, where Edgmon earned All-American status by taking second place at 125 pounds. He followed that with another All-American year as a senior, finishing fifth at 125 pounds.

While his college eligibility was up, Edgmon still had two years left to finish his undergraduate degrees. And it was around then Edgmon was able to land the recently opened assistant coaching job at Hays High School, where he has spent the previous four years as an assistant coach and this last season helping coach soccer.

"Ironically, I played soccer at Goddard and my sophomore year (fall 2002) we played Hays High in the state finals," Edgmon said. "And I scored the first goal in regulation time and then I scored the overtime goal to win the game against Hays. Now ironically, I went on to coach for Hays High."

Edgmon will inherit a strong Newton program next winter, which includes the reigning 182-pound state champion in Class 5A, Jared Langley. Langley, a senior-to-be, competes in the same weight class as Hays High's Ethan Deterding, who took fourth at state as a junior.

Hays High and Newton often compete in the same regional and both attend the Rocky Welton Invitational in Garden City on an annual basis, meaning Edgmon plans to run into his former team a couple of times each season.

Before that happens, Edgmon understands he has a lot to learn about the administrative side of becoming a head coach. But becoming a coach and teacher has been a dream of his, and he is excited about the opportunity that came his way with his new job in Newton.

"Coaching and teaching is always something I wanted to do. I got my master's in sports administration to possibly become an athletic director down the road," Edgmon said. "But right now I just love coaching and teaching the sport."