The Falcon mat program was eliminated after the 1982-1983 season.
In fact, the last time wrestlers took to the mat at Fairmont State, the top song of 1983 was “Every Breath You Take” by The Police… the prime-time soap opera “Dallas” was the No. 1 TV show … while the No. 1 movie was “Return of the Jedi.”
As the 17th intercollegiate sport at Fairmont State, Falcon wrestlers are set to begin competition during the 2019-20 athletics season as a member of NCAA Division II and the Mountain East Conference. The search for Fairmont State’s head wrestling coach will begin immediately.
“I am excited to welcome wrestling back home to the Falcon Nation as our 17th sport,” said Dr. Mirta M. Martin, President at Fairmont State University. “This region has an abundance of talented student-athletes who wrestle, and adding wrestling allows Fairmont State to give these hard-working students access to a quality higher education.
“Adding wrestling also gives us one more activity through which we can share with the world how Fairmont State transforms passion and effort into excellence,” Dr. Martin added.
Wrestling had a long, rich history at Fairmont State dating back into the late 1950s. According to the school announcement’s about the reinstatement of its wrestling program, the Falcons were a “highly successful as a member of the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference and NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics). In fact, Fairmont State won eight WVIAC Wrestling Championships from 1962-1976.”
A half-dozen former Falcon wrestlers have been enshrined into the Fairmont State Athletics Hall of Fame, including Bruce Hinkle, who became the first-ever individual national champion at Fairmont State in the sport of wrestling. In addition, Rodney Baird, Mike Kirby and Gary Moyer each finished with top 5 finishes at the NAIA National Championships as Fairmont State wrestling standouts.
Founded in 1865, Fairmont State University is a four-year, public school located in Fairmont in northern West Virginia, about a half-hour south of Morgantown, home to West Virginia University. Fairmont State has an enrollment of approximately 4,200 students. Falcon varsity sports programs — including the newly reinstated wrestling program — compete in NCAA Division II.