Tom Brands Article

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Tom Brands
Personal information
BornApril 9, 1968 (1968-04-09) (age 50)
Omaha, Nebraska, U.S.

Tom Brands (born April 9, 1968) is an American former Olympic wrestler and is currently the head wrestling coach for the University of Iowa. He won a gold medal in the 1996 Summer Olympics. [1]

An intense competitor, Brands' wrestling career with the University of Iowa included a record of 158-7-2 and an undefeated season in 1991 where he was 45-0. He was a four-time All-American, three-time NCAA Champion, three-time Big Ten Conference Champion, and Outstanding Wrestler at the 1992 NCAA Tournament. His brother, Terry, was also a standout at Iowa.

Internationally, Brands won a gold medal at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics in freestyle at 136.5 pounds; a gold medal at the 1993 World Freestyle Championships in Toronto; two World Cup gold medals (1994 and 1995); and the gold at the 1995 Pan American Games. He won four U.S. Nationals titles (1993–96) and made four straight U.S. World or Olympic teams (1993–96). He was named 1993 USA Wrestling Athlete of the Year, 1993 John Smith Outstanding Freestyle Wrestler, and 1993 Amateur Wrestling News Man of the Year. He was inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2001.

Coaching career

Brands served 12 seasons as assistant coach for the Hawkeyes, from 1993 to 2004. Brands was named National Wrestling Coaches Association Assistant Coach of the Year in 2000. He also served as head coach at Virginia Tech for two seasons. In the spring of 2006, Tom Brands returned to the University of Iowa as head coach. Brands led the Hawkeyes to national titles in 2008, 2009, and 2010. Under Brands, Iowa also captured conference titles in 2008, 2009, 2010, and were the 2015 co-champions with Ohio State.

During Brands' tenure as head coach, 8 different wrestlers have won individual national titles, and Iowa has won over 200 dual meets.

NCAA Champions under Tom Brands

Season Team Overall Conference Standing Postseason
Virginia Tech ( Atlantic Coast Conference) (2004–2006)
2004-05 Virginia Tech 16-4 5-0 Season/Tournament: 1st/2nd NCAA: T-42nd
2005-06 Virginia Tech 1-16 1-4 Season/Tournament: 5th/5th NCAA: 29th
Virginia Tech: 17-20 6-4
Iowa ( Big Ten Conference) (2006–present)
2006-07 Iowa 14-5 5-3 Season/Tournament: T-3rd/3rd NCAA: 8th
2007-08 Iowa 21-1 8-0 Season/Tournament: 1st/1st NCAA: 1st
2008-09 Iowa 24-0 8-0 Season/Tournament: 1st/1st NCAA: 1st
2009-10 Iowa 23-0 8-0 Season/Tournament: 1st/1st NCAA: 1st
2010-11 Iowa 15-0-1 8-0 Season/Tournament: 1st/2nd NCAA: 3rd
2011-12 Iowa 14-4 6-2 Season/Tournament: T-3rd/3rd NCAA: 3rd
2012-13 Iowa 20-3 8-0 Season/Tournament: 1st/3rd NCAA: 4th
2013-14 Iowa 15-2 7-1 Season/Tournament: T-1st/2nd NCAA: 4th
2014-15 Iowa 17-1 9-0 Season/Tournament: 1st/T-1st NCAA: 2nd
2015-16 Iowa 16-1 9-0 Season/Tournament: 1st/2nd NCAA: 5th
2016-17 Iowa 13-2 8-1 Season/Tournament: 2nd/3rd NCAA: 4th
2017-18 Iowa 12-3 6-3 Season/Tournament: T-5th/4th NCAA: 3rd
Iowa: 204-22-1 90-10
Total: 221-42-1

      National champion         Postseason invitational champion  
      Conference regular season champion         Conference regular season and conference tournament champion
      Division regular season champion       Division regular season and conference tournament champion
      Conference tournament champion

Personal Info

Widely known for his intensity and aggressive style on the mat, he and his twin brother Terry were both coached by Dan Gable. Brands has authored several instructional VHS/DVD products that teach and advocate his "in-your-face" style of wrestling.

Brands grew up in Sheldon, Iowa and holds a bachelor of science degree in physical education from the University of Iowa. He is married and has three children, two daughters and a son. [2]


  1. ^ Litsky, Frank (August 3, 1996). "Brands's Intensity Salvages Day for U.S." New York Times. Retrieved October 4, 2014.
  2. ^ "Tom Brands Profile". Retrieved 2010-12-31.

External links