May 18, 2012

Gary Franke Elected to NWCA Division III Hall of Fame

LEXINGTON, Va. – The National Wrestling Coaches Association has announced that former Washington and Lee Head Coach Gary Franke will be among two coaches and three athletes enshrined into the Division III Hall of Fame as the class of 2013.

Franke and Tom Kessler of York College will be inducted along with former wrestlers Ryan Allen of Wisconsin-La Crosse, Duane Bastress of York and Garrett South of Luther.  The ceremony will take place on March 14 in Cedar Rapids, Iowa during the National Championship festivities.

Franke, who already resides in the National Wrestling Hall of Fame's Virginia Chapter, retired as head coach of the Generals following 38 seasons after the conclusion of the 2010-11 season. 

Franke led W&L to nearly 200 wins and three conference titles, while being named the conference coach of the year three times.  He coached 24 Academic All-Americans and one NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship winner.

Active in the wrestling community, Franke served on the National Wrestling Coaches Association Executive Committee from 1977-80 and he was a Virginia High School League (1973-97) and an NCAA wrestling official (1973-93).  He was also a volunteer assistant for the 1976 Olympic Wrestling Team in Montreal.  He began a four-year term on the NCAA Division III Wrestling Committee in 2009.

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