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Wrestling’s Joe Gonzales Set for Induction to DII Hall of Fame

Feb 2, 2022

MANHEIM, PA The National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) announced the 2022 Jim Koch Division II Hall of Fame Class, which includes former Sun Devil Wrestling assistant coach Joe Gonzales, alongside nine other inductees. Gonzales wrestled at Cal State Bakersfield for two season (1979-80) before coaching at Arizona State for four seasons where he helped lead the Sun Devils to the 1988 NCAA title. The Jim Koch Hall of Fame Class of 2022 will be inducted at the NWCA National Convention July 30, 2022 at the Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla.

2022 Hall of Fame Inductees

  • Joe Gonzales
  • Jon Azevedo
  • Randy Batten
  • Adam Cuestas
  • Dan Cuestas
  • Mike Gallego
  • Cody Garcia
  • Todd Meneely
  • Kamaru Usman
  • Lazaro Renoso

Gonzales was a two-time NCAA DII National Champion and one-time DI champion too. He won at 118 pounds in 1979 and 1980, and took the '80 DI title. He was also named the NCAA DII Most Outstanding Wrestler in 1979, all while competing at Bakersfield. Prior to his time at Arizona State, Gonzales represented the United States on four World Teams and at the 1984 Olympic Games.
Gonzales became an assistant coach for Sun Devil Wrestling in1986 under head coach Bobby Douglas where he helped ASU claim the 1988 NCAA National Championship crown. During that National Championship run, Gonzales coached current head coach Zeke Jones, who finished sixth in the 118-pound division, the same division Gonzales competed in. Jones also won the 1988 Pac-10 Individual title. Arizona State had seven All-Americans and defeated the previous season's champion and runner up, Iowa State and Iowa, during the title run. 
About the NWCA
The NWCA was established in 1928 to help with "protecting, serving and promoting amateur wrestling in the educational environment." It is a one-stop shop for the coaches and people within the wrestling community to continue building and developing the sport. The NWCA Hall of Fame Induction ceremony officially returns this year after taking a year off due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.