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  • Peter Miller

SGG episode #17: Wisconsin wrestling coach Chris Bono started wrestling at age five…


Coaches are important educational leaders in our schools, communities, and universities. The Sport and the Growing Good (SGG) podcast provides embedded, front-line insights on winning and positive development. The SGG podcast can be heard here and on all major podcast platforms.

Chris Bono is the head wrestling coach at the University of Wisconsin. He was a three-time All-American wrestler at Iowa State and was the NCAA champion at 150 lbs. Coach Bono has quickly developed the Wisconsin wrestling program into one of the best in the nation. In this episode of the SGG podcast, we discuss:

1.  Starting wrestling as a five-year old.

2.  The difficult position he was put into as a new coach right out of college.

3.  The importance of developing deep relationships with the student-athletes.

4.  His daily routine – which starts very early (4:15am).

5.  Pearl Jam.

6.  The importance of positive habits…but also setting goals and enjoying “little successes” along the way.

7.  Why he’s changing the team’s practice schedule for the season ahead (the importance of remaining adaptable and being willing to change).

8.  How he’s responded to failures over the years: “Keep doin’!”

9.  Forcing opponents to “wrestle our style.”

10.  What’s involved with being a head coach – the “CEO” of the program.

11.  Why he asks potential recruits to send videos of a match they lost.

12.  What he pays attention to when he watches a potential recruit compete and when the recruits and their families visit campus.

13.  Keeping up with the ever-changing ways that young people communicate technologically.