SEWARD, Neb. – After four years spent building the Concordia wrestling program into a GPAC powerhouse and national player, Dana Vote has resigned his post as head coach. Vote has accepted the position of director of wrestling operations at Iowa State University. He is set to officially begin duties as a member of the Cyclone wrestling program on Tuesday (Sept. 6).
Vote parts ways following a successful tenure that saw him earn a pair of GPAC coach of the year awards while winning conference dual and tournament titles in each of the past two seasons. At Concordia, Vote coached eight All-Americans and tutored the program’s first-ever individual national champion this past March.
“It was one of the toughest decisions I’ve made in my life,” Vote said. “It’s a good group of kids here. The commitment they’ve shown is what made it so hard to leave. It’s also what’s helped me feel better about the decision because I know that they’re going to succeed in whatever they do. They’ve all shown tremendous growth.
“My time here is time I’ll never forget. I went through basically every emotion you can go through as a coach. We went from being one of the least competitive programs in the country to being nationally relevant and having a national champion and GPAC team championships. It was an awesome opportunity. I enjoyed every bit of it.”
Director of Athletics Devin Smith appreciated the work Vote put in to build Concordia wrestling into a well-respected program.
“Prior to Coach Vote’s arrival, our wrestling program had fallen on hard times and it was extremely evident within his first year that Dana was the right coach at the right time to invigorate our program using the resources and structures already in place,” Smith said. “He expected greatness out of others and under his direction the program became nationally relevant in four short years. Vote had a knack for identifying and landing talented student-athletes, developing them in the classroom and on the mat, while connecting this group with our campus and community in a number of positive ways. Coach Vote will be missed by many, and we wish him and his family the best as he transitions into this new professional role.”
Full-time assistant wrestling coach Levi Calhoun remains on staff at Concordia. The athletic department has opened up a national search to find a replacement for Vote. Smith expects the program to remain a player on the national scene.