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Joe Seay, 2-time NCAA champion wrestling coach at Oklahoma State, dies at 80

Seay guided the Cowboys to a 114-8-2 record in seven seasons.

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Joe Seay, who won two NCAA wrestling team championships as head coach at Oklahoma State, died Thursday. He was 80.

At OSU, Seay guided the Cowboys to a 114-8-2 record in seven seasons from 1985 to 1992 with five straight Big Eight conference championships from 1987 to 1991 and back-to-back NCAA titles in 1989 and 1990. He also coached four national champions: John Smith (1987, ’88 at 134 pounds), Kendall Cross (’89 at 126 pounds), Pat Smith (’90, ’91, ’92 at 158 pounds) and Chris Barnes (’89, ’90 at 177 pounds).

Seay joined the Cowboys after a dozen seasons at Division II Cal State Bakersfield, where he won seven national titles. He’s the only coach to win national team titles in both divisions. He also coached the Untied States to two World Championships and at the 1996 Olympic Games.

Seay was named a distinguished member of the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in 1998.

Prior to his coaching career, Seay wrestled for three seasons at Kansas State before graduating in 1964. He won three national Greco-Roman titles and took second twice in freestyle.