By John Durga
Alma College Wrestling is a decades old program that has seen vast amounts of success through the last 10 years. Many of those years were coached under Alma wresling coach Todd Hibbs.
Hibbs built Alma’s wrestling program up to a frequent top 25 team in division three peaking in sixth in 2016 according to d3wrestle.com.
Hibbs also molded his team in to an elite program academically. The Scots were recognized three times by the NWCA with a team grade-point average of 3.5 or higher under his coaching.
As a former assistant coach under Coach Hibbs I was able to observe the ins and outs of building and maintaining a successful program,” said Jeremiah Tobias. “I feel fortunate to have him as a mentor and friend.”
Throughout his coaching career, Hibbs posted a dual-meet record of 106-53-2, only posting a losing record in his first season at Alma College.
“Coach Hibbs was able to truly put himself in his athletes’ shoes,” said Taylor Mcphail (’18). “Having been a Division 3 wrestler, he knew what I was going through in my highest and lowest points of the season.”
Hibbs also played a big part in Alma College’s athletic facilities advancing. He worked with the Alma College Advancement Office raising nearly $4 million for the new additions to Alma College’s athletic facilities. It included the Hatcher Wrestling Room, the Sherman Strength and Conditioning Facility, a new area for the cheerleading and STUNT team, as well as new coaching offices and a coaches’ locker room.
“Coach Hibbs has spent many years supporting the sport of wrestling through his coaching, writing and announcing,” said Tobias.
“He has helped rebuild and re-establish a program here in the state of Michigan. By doing this he was able to provide guidance for many young men as they transitioned into adult hood.”
Coach Hibbs was a success at other schools as well. His career at Mount Union College produced two NCAA Division three All-Americans as well as three Ohio Athletic Conference Championships. He was also inducted in to Mount Union’s Hall of Fame.
Hibbs has coached at conference rival Olivet College. He rebuilt their program to a top ten team nationally. He was also a candidate for NCAA Coach of the Year in 2006 when his team notched a 16-1-1 record. He was eventually promoted to the vice president for institutional development from 2009-2011.
Hibbs is to be inducted in to Michigan Chapter of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame and has been awarded the Lifetime Service Award. He has received numerous other awards from the individual colleges that he has coached at.
“Regardless of coach being in the hall of fame,” said Mcphail, “he will always be on my personal wall of fame of people I want to be like.”
For those wanting to attend the ceremony it will occur during the chapter’s annual banquet at Weber’s Inn in Ann Arbor on May 20. Anyone is welcome to attend.