is the head wrestling coach for the Oregon State Beavers
The Oregon State Beavers wrestling program was established in 1909, competing in collegiate wrestling across 92 seasons since then. Traditionally a national powerhouse, the Beavers won the Amateur Athletic Union national championship in 1926 and have won their conference championship 47 times...
and a member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame. Prior to joining the Beavers, he was the coach of the University of Iowa wrestling team
The University of Iowa wrestling program is one of the most successful athletic programs in NCAA Division I. The University of Iowa Hawkeyes are a member of the Big Ten Athletic Conference. Iowa is second in NCAA history with 23 national championships, all of which have come since 1975...
from 1998-2006. At Iowa, he succeeded Dan Gable
Dan Gable is an American amateur wrestler. He is famous for having only lost one match in his entire Iowa State University collegiate career—his last, and winning gold at the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, Germany while not giving up a single point...
as head coach, under whom he was a three-time NCAA
The National Collegiate Athletic Association is a semi-voluntary association of 1,281 institutions, conferences, organizations and individuals that organizes the athletic programs of many colleges and universities in the United States...
champion. He guided the Hawkeyes to NCAA team championships in 1998, 1999, and 2000.
Jim was a four-time All-American at Iowa from 1981-84. He won the NCAA individual title in the 158 pound division in 1982, 1983, and 1984. He went undefeated his last two years, ending his college career with an 89 match winning streak. At the 1984 NCAA Championships he was named Most Outstanding Wrestler. Amateur Wrestling News named him "Wrestler of the Decade" for the 1980s.
He finished second in the 163 pound division at the U.S. Nationals competition in 1988.
Zalesky is a member of the United States Coaches Association, and was inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2004.
Despite coaching the Hawkeyes to three NCAA team championships in nine years, with a runner-up finish as recently as 2004, Zalesky was fired as Iowa's head coach on March 30, 2006. Athletic Director Bob Bowlsby cited a decline in the program under Zalesky and the need for a change as the reasons.
Oregon State University is a coeducational, public research university located in Corvallis, Oregon, United States. The university offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees and a multitude of research opportunities. There are more than 200 academic degree programs offered through the...
prior head coach, Joe Wells, retired a few days later leaving the program on a high note ending with a 13-2-1 record for the 2005-06 season. Zalesky was announced as Oregon State's new head coach on April 14, 2006.