Pictured: Nate Engel Coaching at Oregon State. Image courtesy of Oregon State Athletics.
“This promotion is more than just him being an amazing recruiter or an Olympic team coach,” said Pendleton. “It’s about the type of person he is and what he embodies for our program. When I hired Nate a year and a half ago, I had no idea what a phenomenal person I was bringing into the program. There is no one I would rather build Beaver wrestling with moving forward.”
Engel finished his first season with the OSU wrestling program in 2021. He played a key part in helping OSU finish second at the Pac-12 Championships with 123.0 team points, just 15 behind Arizona State.
Under his guidance, Devan Turner (133) and Grant Willits (141) won their second individual Pac-12 Championship titles in 2021. He assisted in Hunter Willits (157), Ryan Reyes (184) and J.J. Dixon (197) all earning a runner-up finish at the Pac-12 Championships. Brandon Kaylor (125) also earned a third-place finish last season.
“I want to thank Chris Pendleton for this promotion,” said Engel. “I also want to thank Scott Barnes and Dan Bartholomae for giving me this opportunity and the rest of the wrestling staff – Isaiah Martinez, Mike Kosey and Evan Hooper – for their support and hard work with the wrestling program. Working with Chris this past year has been one of the best decisions I have ever made. I’m excited for where Beaver wrestling is headed through the support of our alumni, current student-athletes and recruits. I know this program is going to continue to grow in the future, and I’m excited to continue to build the DAM with each of them.
I would also like to thank my wife, McKayla, because without her, I wouldn’t be the man I am today. She has pushed me to strive to be the best every day. This promotion means the world to me and my family.”
Last season, Engel also helped coach six wrestlers – Kaylor, Turner, Grant Willits, Hunter Willits, Reyes and Dixon – to qualifying for the 2021 NCAA Wrestling Championships. Beaver wrestlers posted a combined overall record of 88-80 and 44-46 in duals. In 2021, OSU went 51-45 in matches decided by decision and 23-16 in major decision matches.
This past August, Engel served as the personal coach for Olympic Silver Medalist Adeline Gray at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Gray was ranked No. 1 in the world and was a five-time world champion who wrestled freestyle at 76kg.