Story provided by Stillwater Public Schools
“I’m not looking forward to not being with my wrestling team,” says Doug Chesbro, Head Coach of Stillwater High School Wrestling. “But I am looking forward to having some more time with my family, especially around the holidays.” Chesbro is retiring from his coaching duties after this season.
“The thing I’m most thankful for is getting the opportunity to step down when I want to, not when I have to,” he says. “The program is in good shape. There are good kids in the program and good kids coming up into it, so I’m excited to see what the next person can do.”
Chesbro continues his family’s Stillwater wrestling legacy. His Father, Tommy Chesbro, was the Stillwater High School wrestling Coach before leaving that position to become the head wrestling coach at Oklahoma State University.
While attending OSU, the younger Chesbro tried collegiate wrestling. “There were a few guys on my dad’s team… I was never going to beat them out for a spot,” Chesbro recalls, “But it didn’t matter, all I ever wanted to do was coach.” While still pursuing his degree, he spent a year volunteering to assist the wrestling program at SHS, then another year at the junior high where he ultimately became the head coach for two years.
Graduation led him away from Stillwater for a short time, until he returned to become head wrestling coach at the high school in 1995.
This is Chesbro’s 32nd year as a head wrestling coach. He has coached 29 individual state champions. He’s won one team state tournament championship, and one dual state tournament championship, and lead three state runner up teams. His SHS teams have brought home nine district titles, and finished in the top 10 of the state tournament for 15 years in a row.
He has been named Oklahoma Coaches Association Regional Coach of the Year four times, and was named Coach of the Year in 2014 by the National Federation of State High School Associations. In October 2017, Doug Chesbro was inducted into the Oklahoma Chapter of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.
His contributions to the department will be missed by his Stillwater Athletics peers. “He is the kind of person that attracts others, the kind of guy that we all want to be around, the kind of guy that makes us feel good about ourselves,” says Athletic Director Tucker Barnard. “We’re all glad he won’t be too far away,” referring to Chesbro remaining on staff to continue his teaching duties of biology and drivers education.
“I’ll help them out all I can,” says Chesbro. “If I’m needed.”
The last home match of the season, and Chesbro’s career, will be Tuesday, January 21 when the Pioneers face the Bartlesville Bruins for Senior Night at 7pm.
“I would love to see that gym filled up against a team like this,” says Chesbro. “It’s an enjoyable time. We’ve got a pretty good team, and I’d love to have them send me out with a win.”