DURHAM, N.C.—Duke University Vice President and Director of Athletics Kevin White announced Wednesday the school and wrestling head coach Glen Lanham have agreed to a contract extension through June 30, 2020.
“What Glen Lanham has accomplished in his five years as Duke's head wrestling coach is amazing,” said White. “To be sure, Glen has brought tireless passion, appreciable discipline and unprecedented results – both on and off the mats – to the program, which has registered its four highest NCAA Championship team finishes in history under his leadership. We are honored, and ecstatic, that Glen will continue to ably guide the Blue Devils into a very bright future!”
Lanham was introduced as Duke wrestling head coach April 16, 2012 and has left an indelible mark on the program in his five seasons at the helm. Under Lanham's direction, the Blue Devils have sent 16 wrestlers to the NCAA Championships, five more than the previous nine seasons combined, earned the highest NCAA finish in history and had 13 earn Scholar All-America recognition.
“Duke is a great environment in which to work,” said Lanham. “I can speak for myself. I have been fortunate enough to coach some of the very best and brightest student-athletes. We're really close to them and it's different with our guys here. I know they're doing the right things. That's unique. They are focused, they know what they want to do and they're just great to be around.”
Prior to Lanham taking the reins Duke had just one All-American, never finished higher than 35th at the NCAA Championships and had 46 Blue Devils qualify for the NCAA Championships from 1955 through 2012. Since Lanham took over in the 2012-13 season, Duke has sent multiple qualifiers to the NCAA Championships in each of the five seasons, and finished among the top 32 in each of the past four NCAA Championships.
Prior to the 2015-16 campaign, Duke had never sent more than two wrestlers to the NCAA postseason event in consecutive seasons. At least three Blue Devils have qualified for the NCAA field every year since 2015.
Lanham has mentored two All-Americans, including Duke's first three-time All-American Conner Hartmann, during his five seasons. Seven Blue Devils have garnered All-ACC recognition since 2013 with Hartmann capturing consecutive ACC titles in 2015 and 2016.
In addition to the numerous NCAA qualifiers and top 30 NCAA team finishes, the Blue Devils have defeated three Big Ten opponents for the first time in program history and defeated the highest ranked opponent in Duke history when they beat No. 13 North Carolina in 2016.
Duke's success off the mat is equally as impressive and consistent. The Blue Devils have been one of the top 30 teams in team GPA every year under Lanham and ranked as high as fourth in 2016. Under Lanham's leadership, Duke regularly lands the most All-ACC Academic Team selections and has had at least two NWCA Scholar All-Americans in four of the five seasons.
“The team's considerable academic success is significant for Duke Wrestling,” Lanham said. “We understand we represent Duke University in everything we do. Where we are in the ACC, finishing on top or tied for the most ACC honor roll members, having five Scholar All-Americans – that's always been incredibly important to me. I know we'll get it done on the mat, but building the total student-athlete has been a driving force and is something we, as a program, hang our hats on.”