Women’s wrestling adds talent to coaching staff

Cochran comes from just down the road, where she wrestled at Grand View.

Photo from Grand View roster

Cochran comes from just down the road, where she wrestled at Grand View.

by Abby Hintz, Layout Editor

The women’s wrestling team will have a new assistant coach next season. Head coach Jeff McGinness announced the hiring of Emma Cochran on April 7. Cochran will graduate from Grand View University this month with a bachelor’s in kinesiology. She is also a successful collegiate wrestler.

Simpson Athletics posted Cochran’s accolades while at Grand View on April 7. Cochran was a part of the inaugural women’s wrestling recruiting class. She was also a senior team member, a two-time NAIA All-American, a Junior National Team All-American and a team representative for Wrestlers in Business Network.

In 2022, Cochran won the 101-pound championship and was named the Heart Conference Tournament Outstanding Wrestler. She received the Clutch Performance Award and was the SHAPE research symposium’s top overall winner. On top of that, she was a two-time Scholar All-American.

While McGinness was in charge of the search, Marty Bell, the athletic director of Simpson College, met with Cochran and shared his perspective and feedback with McGinness. 

“I think Emma brings great energy to the program and will be a great role model for our student athletes,” Bell said.

Sophomore Kylie Rae Torres has high hopes for Cochran and what she can bring to the team and the coaching staff.

“I think the perspective of what it means to and the process of being a woman wrestler is what she can bring,” Torres said. 

She believes having Cochran on the coaching staff is important because she will be able to relate to the team more.

“She can give her perspective and even be able to call anything out,” Torres said.

Freshman Isabella Alva believes that Cochran will bring good things to the program, stating she will know the challenges the coaches go through and what it takes to be on a women’s team.

Alva thinks it is important to have Cochran on the coaching staff because she has experience in the organization.

“She will be fresh from the challenges of cutting weight and what we all face in the sport of wrestling,” Alva said. “It will also help that she played the sport of freestyle [wrestling] and knows how hard it can be to transfer to a new style of wrestling for our new teammates.”

Like Torres, Alva also stated that Cochran could hold them accountable.

“Not saying coach did a bad job, but she [Cochran] knows what she’s doing with the women’s team, as we all have been through what she has mostly been through too,” Alva said. “She was the 101-pounder at Grand View and had to cut the weight to be in that spot. It was hard, but she will help us in the best way that she can. I hope the best for her and that she knows team one is a tough one.”

Cochran is originally from Chariton, Iowa and after interning at Ekin Nutrition last summer and gaining lots of knowledge, Cochran plans to pursue a master’s degree in nutrition.